By LAMECH JOHNSON
Tribune Staff Reporter
A MAN convicted of the throat-slashing murder of a fast food restaurant manager will contest the Court of Appeal’s upholding of a jury’s verdict to the country’s highest court, London’s Privy Council.
Simeon Bain, 45, appeared in the Claughton House courtroom yesterday seeking conditional leave to appeal the appellate court’s January 2016 decision to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council.
The request was granted.
On May 2, 2013, Bain was unanimously convicted of all the charges he faced, except attempted robbery, concerning the September 19, 2009 death of 21-year-old Rashad Morris.
Morris was kidnapped from the Charlotte Street location of Burger King and taken to the Tonique Williams-Darling Highway location, where he had been the manager.
He was ordered to open the safe. After failing to do so, he was stabbed in the restaurant’s parking lot before his throat was slashed. Bain denied charges of murder, robbery, attempted robbery, housebreaking and kidnapping. Immediately after his conviction, the case’s lead prosecutor, then Director of Public Prosecutions Vinette Graham-Allen, announced the Crown’s intention to seek the death penalty.
However, on July 30 Justice Indra Charles sentenced Bain to life imprisonment on the basis that the case did not meet the “worst of the worst” threshold set by the Privy Council.
Bain, and law firm Callenders & Co, challenged the conviction and sentence to the appellate court on multiple grounds, including that he should have had legal representation in his murder trial.
Bain chose not to be represented by counsel during his murder trial.
While the Court of Appeal upheld his conviction and determined that the case met the worst of the worst legal threshold for the imposition of the death penalty, Bain’s sentence was reduced to 55 years.