By LAMECH JOHNSON
Tribune Staff Reporter
A MAN accused of the manslaughter of his four-year-old son due to negligence appeared in Magistrate’s Court yesterday seeking to be released on bail to attend his son’s funeral this weekend.
However, Chief Magistrate Joyann Ferguson-Pratt told 26-year-old Wenzel Demeritte and his lawyer Alex Dorsett that they would have to wait until Wednesday for a bail hearing.
The chief magistrate explained that she wanted be sure she had the jurisdiction to consider the matter due to the nature of the charge, but also to have as much information as possible, including background of the accused, in order to give appropriate consideration to the question of bail.
Demeritte was remanded to the Department of Correctional Services until August 12 at 2.30pm, when the matter is expected to be reheard.
According to police reports, the boy, Denzil Joshua “Joshy” Demeritte, and another young boy were playing with a handgun at his home on Balls Alley when the gun went off and Denzil was shot.
The incident occurred on August 1, shortly after 3pm, police said.
The four-year-old was taken to hospital, but died a short time later.
The accused was arraigned three days later before Magistrate Andrew Forbes on a charge of manslaughter by negligence – to which he could not plead – and two other charges: possession of an unlicensed firearm and possession of ammunition.
He pleaded not guilty to those charges.
His son’s funeral is scheduled for Saturday, August 8, at the New Mount Baptist Church.