(BVI NEWS) — St Vincent native Lennox Da Silva may receive a lesser prison sentence after both the Crown and his attorney cited that provocation was a major factor at play when he killed his wife in 2017.
“It was clear that he was pushed to the brink … It is one of the most unfortunate matters,” the Crown said ahead of the man’s sentencing hearing.
Da Silva pleaded guilty to manslaughter, a crime that can carry a life sentence or a sentence between 14 and 18 years in prison. The court heard that he is also charged with murder, but that offence will be dealt with later.
As for the manslaughter, the Crown told the court that they believe Da Silva’s sentence should begin at the 14 to 18-year margin.
However, the killer’s attorney Patrick Thompson said while the Crown’s suggestion is ‘reasonable’, he is pushing for a single-digit sentence.
With the relevant sentence discounts applicable for Da Silva’s early guilty plea, his expressions of remorse, and him having no previous convictions, Thompson is hoping to secure a sentence in the eight-year range for his client.
Thompson said the mitigating factors clearly outweighed the aggravating ones and the crime fell on the medium-to-low culpability scale.
The attorney also pointed to a report from Her Majesty’s Prison where Da Silva remains on remand. While BVI News has not has sight of the report, the document is said to clearly establish Da Silva’s overall good character.
His attorney said a number of other character witnesses could also attest to this so-called good character before the June 2017 killing.
Justice Ann-Marie Smith will announce the man’s sentence on May 24.
In the meantime, the court heard that following the killing, Da Silva reportedly told his next-door neighbour that his slain wife Sherika Nelson-Da Silva, who died at 27, was unfaithful.
“Man, she got pregnant for someone else and got an abortion,” he reportedly said.
The court heard that Da Silva further told his neighbour that his late wife was sexually involved with two other men and he followed her to Pockwood Pond and witnessed her unfaithfulness on the night in question.
When she came home, she was reportedly peeved that he had followed her and started packing her bags to leave him, the court heard.
An argument ensued between the two, and she reportedly told him that gunmen should have killed him in Jamaica, referring to an incident which took place while they were in her home country.
Reports are that a gunman had shot Da Silva multiple times at her family’s residence in the Old Pasley area of Palmers Cross, Clarendon.
That incident was labelled as a robbery at the time.
Fast-forwarding years later, Da Silva cut his wife’s throat in the presence of their two young children on June 10, 2017.
“I felt like an evil spirit came over me … I saw black,” Da Silva said.