By LAMECH JOHNSON
Tribune Staff Reporter
A JUDGE yesterday deferred a sentencing hearing by a week for a man who was recently convicted of the gunpoint robbery of an elderly man at his workplace three years ago.
Jarvis Fernander, 22, stood trial before Senior Justice Stephen Isaacs for two days on charges of armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon concerning the March 28, 2014 hold up of Dudley Martinborough for his cellular phone, $180 cash and a Rolex watch valued at $3,000.
Fernander had denied the charges when formally arraigned in the Supreme Court and when his trial began on February 28.
The jury convicted him on March 2.
In yesterday’s scheduled sentencing hearing, Fernander’s lawyer Calvin Seymour raised a legal issue concerning the assault charge, referring to the Privy Council decision of Chevanese Hall. The Privy Council’s decision upheld the Court of Appeal’s ruling to quash the conviction in The Bahamas’ first tried human trafficking case.
The issue concerned whether Fernander should have been tried summarily, or indictable concerning the assault charge.
Crown prosecutor Darell Taylor and Mr Seymour were given a week by Senior Justice Isaacs to prepare submissions and counter submissions on the issue.
The judge adjourned the matter to March 22.
At Fernander’s trial, the nine-member jury heard testimony from the 73-year-old coordinator of the Bahamas Maritime Cadets institution that sometime around 10am on the day in question, while at the East Bay Street school, he observed two men approaching the door to the old Gold Circle Complex.
The victim said one of the men was 5’8” and the other 5’11”. He described both as slim. However, he said the men never came inside which led him to believe they were up to no good.
When he tried to lock the door, the men barged in and were tugging at him aggressively when his eye glasses fell off.
He also noticed that the shortest of the two men was armed with a black handgun.
After telling them that the school had no money, the gunman threatened to put a bullet in his head.
He was struck in the head and they took the items that they had demanded.
He picked out the accused at an identification parade four days after the incident.
In cross-examination, the witness admitted that he was near-sighted and had glaucoma but insisted he’d observed the men for some 30 seconds.
He also said the same individuals came into the school making inquiries about the establishment two days earlier.
Before excusing the jury to deliberate, the judge noted that persons can sometimes make mistakes in identification.
The jury, after two hours of deliberation, returned unanimous 9-0 guilty verdicts on both charges.