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Compol Williams Speaks on Possible Implementation of Murder Degrees

14-year-old Laddie Gillett was fatally shot and killed by police officer Kareem Martinez earlier this month in Placencia. Martinez was charged with manslaughter and is currently out on bail. Public outrage grew and calls for justice continue. In other quarters, discussions over the need to change the laws were sparked. Home Affairs Minister, Kareem Musa has undertaken to present to cabinet a proposal that will see the changes of murder charges to different degrees of murder. Commissioner of Police Chester Williams supports the idea.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “I do believe it makes proper sense. I think right now we only have Class A and Class B. Class A differentiation¬†is that one is murder committed with a firearm and the other is murder committed not with firearm or if you kill a law enforcement officer or a judicial officer. But to have different classes like in the US where you have murder 1, murder 2 or whatever I think it will help to some extent where instead of going from murder to manslaughter you can go from murder 1 to perhaps murder 2 where the elements may be different. Maybe you’ll find that murder 1 does require that you have some degree of intent and murder 2 may not require that degree of intent. So I think it will be a good way to go.”

Reporter: Are we making any steps to this direction ? 

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “Well the minister is the minister and he is the policy maker and he is the one who represents us in parliament so I’m sure he’s going to make representation to Cabinet first because you know the law making process it must go to Cabinet as a Cabinet paper they have the discussion there if Cabinet agrees then it then goes to the drafter and then the drafter begins to do the drafting.”