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LONG WAIT FOR ANNAMAY

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The matter involving Annamay Lewis, a 56-year-old vendor of Layou who is charged with throwing missiles to the danger of others, at a protest action in Kingstown, August 5, 2021, will not be heard until December 14.

Senior Magistrate Rickie Burnette set the adjournment date at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday, after indication that neither party involved was ready to proceed.

The matter was initially scheduled for hearing at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court on January 4, this year, but when it was called on that date, Lewis’ lead attorney- Kay Bacchus-Baptiste, told the court that she was informed by the Prosecution that one of their main witnesses was in quarantine.

Bacchus-Baptiste had also indicated then that her client was not feeling well, and asked for an adjournment. She did not disclose the nature of Lewis’ illness, but the Senior Magistrate adjourned the matter to Wednesday February 9.

However, when the matter was called on Wednesday, Prosecutor Delando Charles informed the court that the prosecutor who has conduct of the case could not be in court because she was ill, and he indicated that the Prosecution was seeking a short adjournment.

The Magistrate then said that the Court had received a letter from Bacchus-Baptiste who was also requesting an adjournment.

In Bacchus-Baptiste letter, read in Court by the Magistrate, she stated that she had two civil matters down for hearing in the High Court on Wednesday, and that she was awaiting the disclosure of the video recording from the police, in relation to Lewis’ matter. Because neither the Prosecution nor the Defense was ready to proceed on Wednesday, Burnette adjourned the matter to December 14.

When the Magistrate told Lewis, who was standing in the dock, that the matter was adjourned to December 14, she replied, “December,” with a look of surprised on her face.

Burnett then explained to her that the Court was ready to proceed, but neither the Prosecution nor the Defense was ready.

After Lewis left the court, the Magistrate pointed out, “You see, when the Court set a date for hearing and both parties are not ready, it means that they are prepared to wait.”

Bacchus-Baptiste told THE VINCENTIAN on Wednesday when contacted following the adjournment of the matter, that she intended to make a preliminary objection on Wednesday in relation to the matter, but she could not be there. She however, intends to make that objection whenever the matter is called again. 

Bacchus-Baptiste did not disclose the nature of the objection she intends to make.

The charge of throwing missiles to the danger of others, in a public place, to wit, White Chapel Road, Kingstown, was one of two charges Lewis was facing, stemming from protest actions organized by the opposition New Democratic Party (NDP), and other organizations, outside the House of 

Assembly, and around Kingstown, August 5, 2021. 

Lewis had also been charged with maliciously wounding Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, by striking him on the right side of the head with an unknown object.

However, on September 15, 2021, when that matter was called at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court, Crown Counsel Rene Simmonds indicated that the Prosecution was withdrawing that charge.

Attorney Israel Bruce is also representing Lewis.

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