Gariko Benjamin acquitted
Friday, June 22, 2012 6:50 PM
FRIDAY, JUNE 22, 7PM UPDATE: Gariko Benjamin was today cleared by a jury of firing a gun, stealing a motorcycle and threatening police officers.
A jury cleared him by majority direction this evening in Supreme Court after four hours of deliberation.
A smiling Mr Benjamin emerged from the courtroom and embraced his family members. He said he didn’t wish to comment.
The crown alleged Mr Benjamin, 20, fired a gun at a Mount Hill, Pembroke home, stole a scrambler bike and then led police on a chase to Somerset at speeds of more than 100 kilometres an hour.
He was also accused of threatening police officers.
Mr Benjamin denied the charges and told the jury he was working that morning and when he got home, his friend Rasheed Muhammad was sitting in his yard on a blue scrambler bike.
He said Mr Muhammad told him he had “pulled chase from the man” and needed to store the scrambler in his shed. Mr Benjamin told the jury he agreed to stash the bike.
Crown counsel Garrett Byrne urged the jury to convict the defendant while Mr Benjamin’s lawyer Charles Richardson told them to acquit him.
Yesterday, the jury was directed to find Mr Benjamin not guilty of gun possession after the prosecution failed to call evidence that Mr Benjamin was not the holder of a firearm license. There was no evidence that a gun was recovered.
This evening Mr Richardson said: “I think it was the right verdict.”