Gas station robber gets 12 yrs

| 01/02/2012

P1010065 (252x300).jpg(CNS): An illegal immigrant from Jamaica has been sentenced to twelve years at HMP Northward for a late night gas station robbery that took place in George Town in 2010. Norval Barrett was found guilty of robbery and possession of an imitation firearm by a jury last year after he stole $454 during a stick-up at the Shedden Road Esso which occurred around 10:30 at night. The judge described the crime as a serious offence and said he could find few mitigating factors. Barrett had planned the robbery, shown no remorse, threated to kill staff and undertaken his crime at night, putting staff at the gas station in extreme fear.

Justice Charles Quin also said in his sentencing ruling that in addition to Barrett’s failure to cooperate or to show remorse, neither the imitation weapon used in the commission of the crime nor the cash that was stolen have ever been recovered.

Wearing a dark cap and glasses to disguise his appearance when he held up the staff at the gas station, Barrett was, however, caught on CCTV. By sheer coincidence a police officer who had reviewed that tape and who was visiting the George Town hospital on an unrelated matter a few days later spotted and recognised Barrett and arrested him.

The judge commended the officer and said that were it not for the alertness of DC Ronald Francis and prompt action the defendant may never have been brought to justice.

As he handed down the twelve year sentence for the robbery along with a further six years for the possession of an imitation weapon to run concurrently, the judge said that people contemplating committing such crimes must understand that if they are apprehended and convicted they will receive lengthy terms of imprisonment.

“Employees working in small businesses and petrol stations are extremely vulnerable,” Justice Quin said. “The court recognises that there has been a marked increase in violent robberies over the past two years. Employees and the general public must be protected from violent robberies.”

He said the gunman had threatened to shoot the cashier, who could not have known whether the weapon was real or not. He said the “fear and the terror caused by the production of such a weapon” would have been the same to the cashier whom he threatened to kill. He said the use of the replica gun had been a further aggravating factor in the offence.

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Category: Crime

Comments (51)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    My excueses keep forgetting its 2012. It was in 2010 so at least they did get the date right!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Laughing my but off. Thay criminal was not caught by no CCTV. I was there at the robbery and i was pumping gas and watched the ENTIRE thing and called in the police. (which they took a while to arrive on scene with only one squad car and two officers… one of them being over weight) My former girlfriend was inside the gas station as it was being robbed. CCTV my ras! This wasnt even last year. It was in 2009…. Get your facts straight court and police and STOP MAKING UP LIES TO MAKE YOUR ISLAND SEEM AND LOOK…… "SAFE"

  3. Anonymous says:

    Yes it is very frustrating that he will be a burden on the Cayman Islands government and her people. But what choice do we have? Send him to Jamaica where he won’t spend time in prison? What message does that send to the world? If you go to the Cayman Islands, commit a violent crime and get caught. The government doesn’t want the cost to incarcerate you, so you get a free ride home. Two suggestions: 1) make Northward prison instead of a country club, and 2) improve Immigration laws, policies, and procedures, so we don’t have illegals running around to begin with.

    • Anonymous says:

      Twelve years is indeed a very costly 'deterrant'. We have people in Cayman who get themselves in trouble for the PRIVILEGE of spending time in our country club at our expense. What really bothers me is how on earth did this guy get to be in Cayman 'illegally' in the first place and exactly what is meant by 'illegally'? Did he not have a passport? did he not have a work permit? And WHO is responsible for him being here illegally? Perhaps a bigger 'deterrant' would be to incarcerate THAT person for twelve years? There is way too much of this happening in Cayman and it is the source of our HUGE crime problem. Our Immigration Department needs to seriously tighten up on this rather than replacing decent, hard working expatriates who have contributed to this country for years with criminals. We never had anywhere near the problem we have with crime until people started getting 'rolled over' and being replaced with the wrong people.         

      • Anonymous says:

        That's right – try to make the issue about Caymanian employers and rollover rather than the real issue. According to caycompass  "By way of personal background, Mr. Tonner explained that Barrett has six children in Jamaica. An electrician, he was trying to make money by buying and selling air conditioners. He came here by boat without papers and had committed various immigration offences".

  4. Anonymous says:

    how does it compare to the two caymanian teens who robbed the pizza store with a machette?????

  5. Anonymous says:

    12 years? I remember murders getting less time than that. Some even walking free..  But I guess its a lesson learned non the less.

  6. Anonymous says:

    As a Jamaican I am disgusted by people who come here and do these things. He should serve the full 18 years in prison, IN JAMAICA! He's a disgrace to Jamaica!

  7. Anonymous says:

    I saw the Commissioner on TV this morning.   He said quote, "A dangerous gunman has been sent to jail for 12 years".     I can agree that the man was dangerous criminal, but how does possession an imitation firearm reach the level of a dangerous gunman?   Perhaps the firearm was endangering the lives the imitation officers in the RCIPS?

    In any case, it is very good that a criminal has been convicted and I concur with suggestions that the man should be deported.


    • IGUANA RUN says:

      13.10  a very stupid statement.  I do not know who gave some of you computers and thought you to use internet.  What a waste of good time.

      An imitation fire arm is dangerous to any one .  How would  another person know it is not.

    • Anonymous says:

      Fake firearm or real firearm. Who cares! This guy couldnot get his hands on a real gun, period. He is dangerous to society and in 12 years he will be deported but will do same somewhere else.  Unfortunately the rehab system does not work. We all know that but we are afraid to say otherwise because it does not look with what we believe to be a fair society. Truth is people been robbed suffer a lot of trauma, many get hurt and scared for life.  In twelve years we would have a dangerous man with no options but to go resort back to do wrong again, next time in a more violent way so not to be caught again.

      Big stiff penalties for those who commit a crime now. Better education and values for the future generations is the only solution.

  8. Anonymous says:

    12 years for robbery is fine by me,  but a slap on the wrist and a walk in the park for murderers and thugs.

    What message are we sending here,  is it shoot or kill someone and you go free but if you get caught for a robbery you do time.. 

    We also need to see double life sentences for murders and shooting crimes too..  Minimum 25 years if you are in possession of any illegal firearm.  We also need to see time serve for anyone including family members who protect these criminals up to 15 years ..  This will help to deter gun crimes .

  9. Anonymous says:

    Which gas station was this one? They were so many stick-ups at gas stations (too many to keep track of) last year and would love to know which one this is.


    CNS: Sorry about that! The location was inadvertently omitted from the story. It's now in there but it was the Esso on Sheddon Road.

  10. Dare to Dream says:

    I am glad this one is off the street for awhile.  I agree it is expensive to house him for 12 years, but think of the alternative. Sending him back to Jamaica to serve his time would be useless, he certainly would not be serving his time.  They don't have time or space in the prison system to deal with this on our behalf. You should read the Gleaner now and then to see what they are dealing with up there on a daily basis.

    • Anonymous says:

      He's probably not a first time offender here, nor in Jamaica.

      He's not a citizen of our islands, so he shouldn't be our cost. Why should he be a drain on our economy and not their's?

      We'll take care of our own and they can have the financial burden of him

      Deport him and let the Jamaican Govt do what they want with him; imprison him or let him out on the street to continue robbing.

      As long as he is off island, I don't care.



      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah but he decided to be a thief here and got caught – where you do the crime is where you do the time.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Does the Cayman government ever send them back to their home country and foot the bill for their imprisonment there? I’m sure it costs less per year to house criminals in Jamaica. Cayman would come ahead even if they paid Jamaica to imprison him.

  12. Anonymous says:

    First. I will agree that when a crime is committed by a Jamaican you hear the person full name, age, parents name, the whole works. And you can not deny that isn't the truth. It isn't as bad as it use to be though.

    12years!??!!! ummm i think that is ridiculous ! I think being a jamaican and an illegal immigrant added more years for him. BUT putting that ALL away. The point isn't really about where you are from. It is getting justice for the people of the Cayman Islands, the victims that have been traumatized! We all need to work together and better this country and steer it from the direction that it's currently headed in.

    And if you ask me, it isn't even the Jamaicans you should be worried about. Worry about the other nationalities that are coming and selling their labour for cheap which then creates problem for our own Caymanians. The other foreign nationals coming in and buying up and making big changes in the Cayman Islands to the point where it seems as if Caymanians voice isn't being heard.

  13. Anonymous says:

    It will cost the public way more than $454 to house him in prison for 12 years.  He should be deported to serve his time in a Jamaican prison. 

    • Anonymous says:

      What makes you think Jamaica will pay to keep him in prison there?

      • Anonymous says:

        They won't, so why do we have to pay and keep him imprisoned so that the streets ofJamaica will be a little bit more safer than ours?

        This is a Jamaican problem, not a Cayamanian one.

        Don't waste our resources when they can be better spent elsewhere; like scholarships for our young.

        This situation is beyond stupid; what is our Govt thinking?

    • Anonymous says:

      If he is simply deported he will not serve time in a Jamaican prison. He will go free.

      • Anonymous says:

        Let them do what they want with him, as long as his is not Our Problem!

        We have enough to deal with as it is!

      • Anonymous says:

        Who cares?  As long as he isn't here let it be Jamaica's problem

        • Anonymous says:

          You are missing the big picture. Your proposal would send a message to expat criminals that the worse that can happen if you commit a serious crime in Cayman is to be sent back home. Hardly a deterrent. 

    • Stephi says:

      Oh Plz, he will back in Jamaica in about 3 months, they only try to make it seem as though justice has been served……and we all know that's far fetched!

  14. Anonymous says:

    Justice has been served, but at what expense to us?

    An Illegal Immigrant, from Jamaica, has been sentenced to 12 years at Northward for the theft of $454!

    The cost to imprison him,for that period, for approximately at $ 75,000/year (CNS please confirm this figure from previous articles) will total $900,000 of the people’s money!

    We are strapped for money, we’re in deficit, people are unemployed and loosing their homes and yet a percentage of the dollars each one of us spends to feed and clothe ourselves goes to house this criminal!

    We give him what we can’t provide for our own families.

    How many of us make that much a year?

    For justice to be served, send him back to Jamaica to serve his sentence at his own Govt’s expense; not at our cost or livelihood!

  15. Anonymous says:


  16. Anonymous says:

    Wow. Really impressive work by the Constable to make that ID. Very Astute, sir.

  17. Anonymous says:

    12 years is a lot better than the slaps on the wrist others have received but in my view the law needs to be changed so that firearms offences must be served consecutively rather than concurrently with no early parole.In this case that would have meant 12 years served rather than the 6 that this thug is likely to serve.

  18. Anonymous says:

    I'm sure the Premier is holding his head down and weeping, asking why his people are doing such things; even though he is maiking it easier and easier for them to prosper in Cayman.

    • Mass Charles says:

      19;40 You don't read that the man was an illegal immigrant? Whats the matter with you? What you mean by "His people"? What the Premier have to do with this robbery? Stop your ignorance and downright stupidity!!!!!!!!

      • Anonymous says:

        The previous poster was being tongue-in-cheek. The premier’s people that they refer to are Jamaicans. The premier gave um status, always visiting Jamica, always trying to make it easier for them to come to Cayman, always saying that Jamaicans are his “kind of people”.

        • Anonymous says:

          If I am not mistaken. the Premier is partly Jamaican.

        • Edwards says:

          So the Premier can't visit Jamaica? Do you know how many prominent indiginous Caymanians spent a substantial part of their lives in Jamaica? Going to school, doing business, vacationing, grand parents are from Jamaica? Do you know that if you are black It is highly likely that your fore parents came from Jamaica or some other Caribbean Islands?

          Colonel D"Ooiley Who defeated  the Spainards for Jamaica in 1655 had a hard time controlling his crew after the battle and many deserted to the Caymans. Some merchants came here with their black slaves also. so did people from around the region and Central and South America. So were English, Scottish, Irish, and a host  of others.

          Do you realise that after the 1932 hurricane one of the first vessel to the Island was from Jamaica? Do you know that there is something called International Relation in which countries of goodwill associate and trade and play sports and exchange information and other mutual interests and benefits. There are good and bad in every country. We too often focast on the bad side. Just try to be objective and not emotional in your comments.How the premier is being blame for this illegal immigrant, I just can't fathom. So if I am married to a Jamaican woman should i get on her case everytime a Jamaican come here and does something bad? Shoul I lambast my children and inlaws because of this? There are quite a few upstanding Caymanian that appreciate Jamaicans, (not the ones who commit crimes)

          Lets be balance and dont let political leanings obscure our judgements

      • Anonymous says:

        He was born in Jamaica, therefore….

  19. Anonymous says:

    Kudos to PC Francis, the RCIPS officers who put together this case, the Prosecutors who were successful in gaining a conviction and the Judge for the severity of the sentence. At least this crim will serve about 10 years minimum. My only issue is that Cayman taxpayers have to foot the bill for this low-life to the tune of over half-million dollars while he resides at Northward. 

    Anyway, this proves that all these crimes are not the work of our own crims, as Caymanians have always maintained – yet we're accused of being xenophopic when we say this. Bet this is not the only robbery committed by overnight canoe visitors.



    • Anonymous says:

      Time for Immigration todo district raids, like back in the good old days.  Too many people encouraging perpetrators to hang around.  The big Mxx must be crying, one of his people got caught.  Is he the only one?   I wouldn't think so.

  20. EXPAT. POINT OF VIEW says:

    Very good.  It is about time that the Judicial get tough on these punks asses.  Terrozing people.  What rhey think it is any way.  And he  illegal immigrant too..  Una gaw too much baby mudda back home.  Now Joe nuh going pick any more money from Western Union fe 12 years.

    The officer deserves a medal.  If more the police would look at faces instead of frock tail, they would see more too.

    Justice served.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Good, I wish all these wannabies would get the same resolt as this guy.

  22. Anonymous says:

    12 years??? guess it's because he's Jamaican.  Funny how you never read about the nationality of the Caymanian criminals, or is it assumed all on island know them?

    Not knocking the court's decision but compared to similar crimes 12 years seems harsh…In any case, glad he's off the streets. At the end of the day – you do the crime, you should do the time!!!


    • Anonymous says:

      That is nonsense. Any time a Caymanian is involved the press quite quickly make that fact public. Note that we heard nothing about this man's nationality until his conviction.

      12 years is not nearly enough for this type of crime whether culprit is Jamaican or Caymanian.

    • FBB says:

      I don't think the judge cared whether he was Jamaican or not, I think the objective was to send a message that this type of behaviour will not be tolerated.

      The sentence does however bring back memories of a certain case of a young lady driving drunk and killing someone else but she didn't even get near 12 years! Sometimes you just have to wonder about these sentencing guidelines or judge's discretions.

    • Anonymous says:

      I appreciate that you are embarrassed that his nationality has been revealed but did you really expect that this could be hidden where a person is convicted of a serious criminal offence of a type that is destroying the fabric of our society?

      Hopefully this will stop the prejudiced comments suggesting every robbery must have been committed by a Caymanian. Obviously some have been and others haven't been.     

  23. Anonymous says:

     Although this involves an "imitation firearm" I hope everyone understands that it could have been a real one and that since it was not recovered it had to be called "imitation" because the only evidence was that it looked like a gun.

  24. WeSoF*%#ed says:

    454/12=$37.83 per year in prison… Who says crime doesn't pay!? 

  25. Anonymous says:

    To all you criminals out there who are robbing everyone left right and center, ask yourself this question…is $454 really worth 12yrs in prison? That's $37.83 for every year he received. I bet he is thinking that right now,

    For those intent on robbing pizza delivery guys, who cant be getting much more than $50 each time they do it, do the maths and think again.

    • Anonymous says:

      Your $ per year analysis would encourage the $50 pizza robbers.  

    • Anonymous says:

      stress free for 12 years ! . $ 37.83 a year more  like    $ 60,000  x 12   720,000  for us to house him.