Neil Alvin Peter yesterday, April 16, 2013 received 12 years imprisonment for causing the death of Kenrick Edwards, but Justice Francis Cumberbatch discounted his sentence by five years due to his age at the time of the incident and the fact that this was his first conviction. He will also receive credit for time served on remand.
According to court records, the homicide stemmed from an incident on July 6, 2008 at Choc near Samman’s Park.
On the day in question, Peter, then 17, was attending a school-sponsored “bram” at Samaan’s Park. Upon leaving the park after the event, the court heard that Peter and some friends proceeded to a bus stop located opposite the park.
The group was among several people awaiting public transportation to Castries central. A mini bus stopped and several persons boarded. An argument commenced between several passengers and the bus driver as a result of the fare he insisted on charging the passengers.
During the course of the argument, Peter was physically removed from the bus by the deceased Kenrick Edwards. A further physical altercation ensued, and the deceased was stabbed several times by Peter with a pen knife.
Peter was indicted on the charge of murder by the Director of Public Prosecution and pleaded not guilty to the charge. His Attorney Leslie Prosper contended that his client acted in self-defence.
During the trial, it was determined that Peter co-operated with police from the beginning of the investigations. He produced the weapon and submitted his clothing into evidence.
Witnesses in the matter gave testimony, which also established that Peter was heavily under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident.
In handing down the sentence, Justice Cumberbatch made reference to the pre-sentence report generated by the probation department, which stated that Peter was a troubled child whose life had been plagued with incidents of misbehaviour and drug and alcohol abuse.
Though his conviction record was clean, court records indicated that was involved in at least two known incidents of a violent nature which resulted in his remand at the Bordelais Correctional Facility.
And while on remand, Peter was involved in at least one incident of insubordination which resulted in him being disciplined.
Cumberbatch also stated that Peter’s particulars were alarming because of his youth and because of the extensive violence of the crime. The judge noted that his quick response to anger and his drug and alcohol abuse needed to be addressed.
Besides his sentence, Peter was ordered to attend counselling sessions for anger management, drug abuse and alcohol abuse, and attend educational classes at Bordelais as he had already expressed interest in them.