By Nico Scavella
Tribune Staff Reporter
A MAN has failed at appealing his 15-year sentence for trying to kill a woman as she sat on a porch five years ago.
The Court of Appeal dismissed Rauel Pierre’s appeal concerning his attempts at both Rashad Farrington’s and Kimberly Goodman’s lives in April 2014.
According to the ruling, around 9pm on the date in question, Ms Goodman was visiting a friend on Milton Street who braided her hair.
At some point, she decided to sit on the front porch and did so with Mr Farrington, the home-owner’s son.
While they were sitting on the porch, Ms Goodman noticed a man standing in the distance, who began to walk towards her and Mr Farrington.
As the person did so, Ms Goodman noticed him pointing a gun in their direction. However, she said that in her opinion, the gun was “jamming”.
At that point, she said she shouted out to Mr Farrington: “That n have a gun,” or words to that effect. The two of them then ran into the house for safety.
Ms Goodman said she heard one gunshot just before she got inside the house. According to the ruling, she was unsure of how many other shots she heard, but based on the evidence she probably heard more than two.
Ms Goodman said she recognised the gunman as a young man she had seen earlier that day and with whom she had had a brief conversation as she was on her way to the Super Value food store.
That person, she said, identified himself as “Racoon” during their conversation.
According to the ruling, Ms Goodman said when she saw “Raccoon” earlier that day he was wearing a white t-shirt. However, the gunman wore a black, hooded sweater/pullover that fell over his forehead.
Nonetheless, she maintained that both were the same person.
Ms Goodman also said the gunman was a person whom she had seen in the area from time to time whenever she would visit the area.
She further testified that once she and Mr Farrington ran inside the house, she told the other occupants that “Racoon” was the person who shot at her and Mr Farrington.
Her identification was based on her recognition of Pierre’s eyes which she described as “funny looking”. She attended an identification parade sometime after the incident in which she picked out Pierre as the person who approached her and Mr Farrington with the firearm.
Sometime later, Pierre was arrested by police officers on mobile patrol who had received certain information. The officers saw him leaving a home and getting into a vehicle that was waiting in the street. The officers searched the yard and found a black hooded sweater.
At the time, Pierre said he was visiting his girlfriend Chrissy at the home he had left. However, the officers made enquiries in the area and were unable to find a person named Chrissy.
Pierre was charged with two counts of attempted murder, and two counts of possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life.
He stood trial before Justice Carolita Bethel; he was found not guilty of trying to murder Mr Farrington but guilty on the other three counts. He was subsequently sentenced to 15 years in prison for attempting to murder Ms Goodman and ten years each for the firearms convictions.
However, Justice Bethel took into account the two years he had spent on remand awaiting trial, resulting in 13 and eight year sentences to run from the date of conviction.