Monday 19 August, 2019

Three cops found guilty of manslaughter in Vanessa Kirkland shooting

The three cops, who were charged with the March 20, 2012 murder of Immaculate Conception High schoolgirl, 16-year-old Vannessa Kirkland, have been convicted of manslaughter.

The verdict was handed down Friday in the Home Circuit Court in downtown Kingston after a three-week trial.

The three cops - constables Anna-Kay Bailey, Andrewain Smith and Durvin Hayles are to return to court on February 14 for a sentencing hearing.

Kirkland, who was a passenger in a blue Suzuki Swift motorcar, was shot and killed during a reported shootout between the police and men on board the car on Norman Lane, St Andrew.

The cops had trailed the car, which had reportedly featured in a robbery in Portmore, St Catherine.

Reports are that the cops ordered the driver to stop. He reportedly refused and sped on to Norman Lane where shots were fired on the vehicle. Kirkland was hit and succumbed to her injuries.

Before handing the case to the jurors on Friday, the presiding judge, Justice Carol Lawrence-Beswick told them that they had the option of considering the lesser charge of manslaughter.

The seven-member jury returned a not guilty verdict on the more serious charge of murder but found the cops guilty of manslaughter.


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