29-year-old Colin Francis Jr., who is accused of causing the death of Nestor Vasquez Junior was arraigned today before Senior Magistrate Aretha Ford. Francis was sharing a cell block with Vasquez on June 8, 2019. Senior Magistrate Ford, in reading the murder charge to Francis did not take a plea from him since the matter is indictable. This means that a plea will only be taken if the case reaches the Supreme Court. Francis is being represented by Richard “Dickie” Bradley who requested that the court order a psychological evaluation on his client. After the arraignment, Bradley spoke to Love News about the case.
Richard “Dickie” Bradley, Attorney: “This morning in front of the Senior Magistrate Aretha Ford the charges were read, he was told that he would not be called upon to plea because nobody is called upon to plea for murder in a Magistrate Court, it is an indictable offense and can only be tried in the Supreme Court. He did have a little difficulty in answering one or two of the basic questions that Magistrates ask persons in relation to reading their charge sheet and he asked if they could read it over again to him the part where ‘on such a such a day you are accused of committing a murder’.”
Reporter: Now you had requested a psychological evaluation but you mentioned just now that he has been attending the clinic so won’t they have a psychological evaluation on hand or something like that ?
Richard “Dickie” Bradley, Attorney: “Well the court, you see I asked for the copy of a document that all accused persons- and I want to repeat this. The Chief Justice had made rules governing the courts and the police every person who is charged for an offense is not only to be given the charge- we call it the charge sheet it’s an information and complaint form which contains the very very brief summary of what is the legal charge against a person but the Chief Justice’s rules, the rules of the Supreme Court that governs the Magistrate’s court governs all criminal matters; the rules are that that accused person is to be given a summary of the facts which led the police to have reasons to charge a citizen and he was not given that, his parents were not given it. But anyhow this morning the prosecutor prosecutor Calrke was kind enough to make a copy available. It makes no indication that in fact he had a history of any mental illness or that he had been subjected to psychiatric attention, treatment, analysis, nothing, nothing so the magistrate would not have known and I guess the other Magistrate in the attempted murder matter would probably have been subjected to the same failure to provide basic information. In any event in speaking with the Magistrate, Magistrate Ford did order a psychiatric evaluation to be provided to the courts within a period of one month.”
Francis was being held for stabbing Nurse Augustina Elijio when he attacked Vasquez.