Chief Justice hands down 11 years to Jazzy ‘B’ killer

| 28/09/2009

(CNS): Following Paul Gordon’s guilty plea for the manslaughter of Sherman Bodden, local radio personality and DJ aka Jazzy B, Chief Justice Anthony Smellie handed down a sentence of 11 years this morning in the Grand Court. He said that while the former security guard had shown remorse, admitted his guilt and was of previous good character, he had killed Bodden in a “jealous rage” and his response to any provocation was “excessively out of proportion”. The country’s top judge noted that unlawful killings of this kind were all too prevalent in the community.

As the judge read out his ruling with regard to sentencing, he stated that this predisposition to violent behaviour must be strongly discouraged and that the court must mark the severity of the crime. Justice Smellie noted that the starting point for manslaughter was 15 years and he had calculated the mitigating factors, but he was concerned that Gordon had previously shown anger and violence towards his girlfriend. The chief justice said that the provocation was not so severe and a less volatile person would not have resorted to using a knife and inflicting so many wounds.

Gordon had admitted stabbing and killing Bodden to the police immediately after the fight and had offered his apologies in open court this week during his sentencing hearing. The Crown had maintained while there had been some provocation, Gordon had still killed Bodden out of anger and not fear for his own life as Bodden was unarmed while Gordon had stabbed his victim six times.

Defence counsel had suggested that the defendant’s estranged girlfriend had been a significant factor in the provocation as she had led her former lover Gordon on to believe that the relationship, although in trouble, was not entirely dead but had also told Bodden, who she had begun to date, that there was no longer anything going on with Gordon, and when she allowed both men into her house late at night at the same time she had created a volatile situation which led to the tragic incident and resulted in Bodden’s death.

“She was inviting an argument when she let her new lover into the house when her old lover was already there who had said he did not believe the relationship was over,” Howard Hamilton QC Gordon’s defence counsel told the court.

See CNS article: Gordon sorry for DJ Killing

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  1. anonymous says:

    Is our justice system so blind that for killing a person – the killer is allowed to live the life of luxury for 11years  and then roam free ?- that is if he is not released earlier for "good behaviour".

    This is why our prison is full.





  2. Anonymous says:

    To the person who posted "You all need to Stop judging"

    Although there is sadness felt by the victims family & the family of the "murderer".  You cannot compare the two griefs as the same. The family of the late Sherman Bodden have lost him forever to a senseless act of jelousy. They will never get the opportunity to see him, talk to him, touch him ever again.

    Paul Gordon’s family still gets to have those priveledges and in a few years He will have the opportunity to live his life as a free man. There is no justice,  he took a life therefore he should have to give up his life and sit in a prison everyday until God decides to call him.   And yes, I feel I have the right to say that because I also had a family member murdered and until this type of crime happens to you (which I pray no one else has to endure such a loss) you will never know that aching pain that never goes away.

    • Anonymous says:

      Agreed. And you all need to stop judging his girlfriend. Assuming she did not testify because he pled guilty, we only have the defence attorney’s account of what happened.  He could have terrorizing and abusing her.  The reason he opted for a judge only trial was so that he could get a lighter sentence.  There is no excuse for murder. 

      I wasn’t there and I don’t know what happened but I do know that iIf every person who has had a boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife dump them for someone else or cheat on them, murdered that person, there would be many many less people and murders too numerous to count.  How this guy got 11 years is an absolute disgrace.  He stabbed Jazzy B six times – not once but six times.  It was murder and there should be no plea bargaining for murder.  He should have been made an example of by getting the highest possible sentence.  The sentence was a joke and an insult to Jazzy B and his family.    It sends yet another message to criminals that its ok to commit crimes because all they get is a slap on the wrist.

      Also, the defendants actions which many saw on tv after he left the court showed clearly that his "remorse" was all one big act.  If he had been truly ashamed, he would not have acted the way he did. 

      Am I missing something here or will he be allowed to stay in Cayman after he finishes his sentence?

    • Anon says:

      I agree with you wholeheartedly. My heart goes out to you and your family for your loss and to the family and friends of Sherman for their loss. There is no justice for murdering another human being in these islands. No justice at all!

  3. LaAdyMaze says:

    Ppl make mistakes??!! oops i dropped an open milk bottle, oops i grabbed the wrong bag, opps i yelled at the wrong person…those are mistakes…oops i sort kinda killed a person, doooesn’t cut it.  Fact is punishment doesn’t fit the enormity of the crime…pfff justice…yeah God will judge but till then we have to live by mans laws and those aren’t looking too good.

  4. Anonymous says:

    You all need to stop judging,! people make mistakes and its life, If it was your family that was stabbed you would’ve felt the sadness and whatever else, if it was your family that did the killing then you would feel sadness, it works two ways here! Ever heard of the saying "Love Kills" well unfortunately it is TRUE!  Put yourself in people shoes sometimes thats the problem with you caymanians now a days AND BEFORE YOU JUDGE ME IM A CAYMAN ASWELL, dont sit down and say oh he deserves this much years because this and ray ray shut up!!! sometimes i just sit down and listen to what you all have to say and im like wtf? people just sit down all day judging pointing fingers at this one and that one, but this is what i’ll say to you!


  5. Anonymous says:

    The judge is sending the wrong message, with all of the violent crimes taking place in Cayman we need to sentence criminals to the stiffest penalties allowed. Let the criminals know "If you do the crime you will do the time" stop the slap on the wrist approach, its not working.   

  6. Anonymous says:

    I wonder what sentence the judge would have thought "Just" had the murdered victim been been his child?  11years is a slap in the face for this victims family and loved ones!!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    I have personally heard people saying things like "I will kill you and go to Northward."

    They have little fear of the consequences of committing serious crimes in Cayman.

    With this type of sentencing it is clear why they are thinking like this. 

    How does this type of sentence deter them?

    I respect the Hon CJ but don’t agree with his sentence here.

    Poor decision. 

  8. 007 says:

    11??? Ah Boy he Should serve 2009 years  

  9. 007 says:

    Umm isn’t he a killer? i thought it would been life oh well justice in Cayman neva amaze me!

  10. HikHik says:

    RE: "HikHik you are an idiot!…"


    I did not "allow" myself to be put in that situation – the woman at the time (like this one, judging by the facts) was trying to "play" both of us.

    All of a sudden, I was in a situation where her "ex" (whom I later discovered she was still "talking" to) is approaching me with a knife in hand because "I’m messing with his woman!"

    I knew NOTHING about this man. No name, no existence of past relationship – NOTHING!

    In the case above it was revealed that she was withholding truthful information from both men. Then, on the fateful night and in the middle of the convicted man’s pleadings to reconcile the relationship she allows her expected new love interest into the house.

    At the very minimum there was going to be a hostile stand-off. Correct?

    Of course she is not criminally liable for anything, but she was the common factor and she did not act responsibly. Grown adults should NOT be playing such games. People do crazy things for "love" in the heat of the moment!

    The judge himself said that such crimes of passion / jealousy are far too prevalent in the community, and I agree completely.

    I am trying to shine light on the behaviour of some people that greatly contributes to this prevalence.

    Call me what you want but this is the truth.

    Sometimes it hurts – even kills.

    • What's the Solution says:

      Mr HIk Hik,

      You do not know the facts of the case, you are only reading what the accused’ s attorney has put forward, please dont speak ill of people that you don;t know XXXX. Find someone else to paint with your brush with your experience.

      • HikHik says:

        No, this is not "my" experience.

        This is the experience of MANY men in these Isles of Cayman.

        I have seen it a hundred times.

        The only difference here is that sadly on this occasion a man lost his life.

        You said – "Find someone else to paint…"

        Please tell me – who better to use as an example of this type of situation?

        Everything I have said makes logical sense – you know it but refuse to acknowledge it for whatever reason.


  11. Anonymous says:

    HikHik you are an idiot! If you are allowing yourself to be put in this kind of position over a woman, then who do you think should be blamed for this? I would say it is you who is the fool! This is what is wrong with a lot of men in this society, they never want to take any responsibility – it is always somebody elses fault.Be a man and stand up for your own actions.

    The sentence is a slap in everyones face! No wonder the police is demotivated trying to put criminals and murderers behind bars if the weak legal system does this kind of stuff.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I have NEVER heard of a Caymanian going overseas and taking the life of anyone.

    Did you, I would like to know if am still correct in saying this?

  13. Anon says:

    Did anyone see the news this morning when this man threw a kiss at the camera and was laughing when he got into the van when leaving the court house!? I tell you there is NO justice in this world! NONE! This man is very happy with his self! He killed another human being, took him away from his family and his loved ones and this man all he does is laugh about it and throw kisses at the camera! How insulting. How very hurtful. I feel so sorry for Sherman’s family and loved ones left behind. XXXXX

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes I did see the news this morning and when that convicted murder ‘blew the kiss’.  He’s not remorseful at all…. But rather laughing at Cayman’s judicial system and that small sentence he was given for murdering "DJ Jazzy B".  He now feels like a "murderer celebrity" and will brag about this for as long as he lives.  Sherman’s family should seek quickly to appeal this small sentence that his killer was handed down and really show society how much "fair justice" mean to them for their loss. 

    • Anonymous says:

      I saw when he threw the kiss, but he was not laughing (go to Cayman News website to see it). The kiss was quite unnerving so I inquired of it to a friend who knows this situation and was told  that he did it for the kids that he disappointed. He called when he got a chance and asked that they be watching tv to see him sending his regards to them.

      It’s so easy to judge somebody else and to everybody he’s the worst person in the entire world and this is understandable for those who mourn (for a time), but know this, God loves him no more and no less than He loves you and I.

      Unfortunately two mens lives were ruined and many left to mourn and hurt over someone being a "playa". There are so many such situations here in Cayman. Love runs very deep people, stop playing with peoples emotions. Be with one person at a time!

      I make no excuses for Paul Gordon, but the truth is that this could have easily been avoided and Jazzy B would still be with us playing the music that was the pulse of the island. So sad, so unnecessary, so unfair to all.

  14. Pale Rider says:

    Ladies and Gentlemen,

      I think what is being misread here is that the Justice noted that the STARTING POINT for Manslaughter is 15 years…NOT the Maximum…The maximum sentence is LIFE!!!   Justice SMELLY,…’cause this decision STINKS, started at the very LOWEST end of the scale and proceeded to TAKE TIME OFF for PROVOCATION!!!

    The CROWN should be appealing this sentence because it is simply too light…but I guess they are so thankful to have actually gotten a conviction, given the recent spate of embarrasments they have gone through, that they are counting their blessings…


  15. Anonymous says:

    As human being, we should not judge… i think the hearing and sentence in this case is fair because true in fact no one knows the true but bodden and gordon… the girlfriend nor the helper was’nt there.

    Jealous is a thing that will make anyone do anything… we may say oh… i would’nt do this or he is wrong but when you are actually in the situation it is different.

    I think that he was just at the wrong place at the wrong  and the time he got to think before he acted was very limit so he just react… No one knows what will happen in life which is why we need Jesus.

  16. Anonymous says:

    It is quite apparent that you serve more time for attempted murder or consumption / possission of drugs *gasp* that for murder itself on this island. I think this is a shame. My condolences to the family of the late Jazzy B. I hope that no parole is offered in this case. Serving 11 full years is a small punishment for such a crime. Jazzy B’s children will be fatherless forever, in 11 years (or probably much less time) when this murderer is free they still will only have their father’s grave for comfort. People that use the excuse of "a crime of passion" should be ashamed. If someone doesnt want you or is playing you that is no excuse to take the life of another, leave and move on. What ever happened to fighing without weapons? The justice system here needs to be revised.

    People have been sentences to 10 years for gun possession (not having shot at or killed anyone) and a murderer will be sentenced for 1 year more. I know that the intention for having a gun is never good and I agree that people with the should be punished but if they can serve 10 years shouldnt a murdered serve at least 20?

  17. HikHik says:

    What about the woman?!

    Sorry people – I view this case in another way.

    Women today love to play this game of "man-juggling" as a way to stir up trouble or even to boost their own selfish self-esteem.

    I know many will disagree with me, but she played a BIG role in this entire story because she was the ONLY PERSON in this casethat had ALL of the INFORMATION on the situation.

    Now, here we are –  a man is dead.

    Over a WOMAN!

    I’m speaking from experience as I have been put in a similar situation.

    Women in today’s world get away with too much.

    She holds much of the responsibility in this altercation.


  18. Anonymous says:

    The unfortunate part is, he won’t serve 11 years! This is very sad that he was not given the maximum of 15 years! If he was walking with a knief he had intent to kill or at the very least do severe bodily harm! He deserved no less than 15 years at the very least!

  19. give a chance says:

    i tink this fairly dealt with and everyone in life make mistake so dnt be ashame of justice smellie he is only doin his job and givin persons a chance

    • Anonymous says:

      It is very sad and shameful that you ‘think this was dealt with fairly’.  You would definitely have another opinion if this was one of your very close friends, loved ones or even a favorable person.  Pray that this does not happen to someone close to you, because only then you will admit/realize that such a small price to pay for taken someone’s life is very unfair. 

  20. Anonymous says:

    I am sorry but 11 years!!!?

    I would have thought that the CJ would have started at 25 years and any reductions for mitigating factors come from that.  Obviously he has used precedence to start the determination; but, this cannot be justice.

    Where is the justice here?  How does Jazzy mother and his children feel?  Yes manslaughter is a crime against the state, but surely some consideration for the victim’s family and loss should be weighted aswell.

    It is my view, that this gentleman should have got no less than 15 years and that is still small time for taking the ultimate action of taking someone’s life!

    Continued prayers for his children, mother, family – immediate and extended (his radio listeners and co-workers). 

    • Anonymous says:

      He’s not a gentleman…..gentlemen don’t kill each other in such malicious violent ways.

  21. Concerned citizen says:

    I agree with the sentence handed out in this case. It seems however, that sentencing of crimes involving knife attacks in Cayman are subject to the injuries sustained. As recent as this week, a woman was given a suspended sentence of 12 months after stabbing someone 2 times in the back. Another similar incident whereby a victim was stabbed and suffered a punctured lung, attracted a two year prison sentence for the perpetrator.

    To base sentencing on the severity of injuries sustained is ridiculous. A single stab to the body can cause death if an organ or major blood vessel is hit. It was sheer luck that the victims in the said  incidents did not die. The attorney in one of the cases argued for a reduction in the sentencing, because the injuries inflicted by his client were not life threatening. She subsequently was given the suspended sentence. Does he seriously believe his client made an effort to stab the victim so as to inflict a non lethal wound? I think two stab wounds to the back could quite easily have involved any of the major organs.

    The message that is being sent by the legal community is that knife incidents are not taken that serious unless someone dies. Cayman needs to get tough on the knife crimes by handing out stiffer sentencing . The law should also be changed to make it unlawful to carry a knife regardless of the size of blade.

  22. Pale Rider says:

    WTF????   You stab an unarmed guy 6 times and claim provocation and get 11 Years????   That is REALLY Going to deter violence…Justice Smellie, you should be ASHAMED of yourself…is this how you intend to deal with the growing problem of violence in Cayman??   I can honestly say that I am disgusted by this….

    • S. McLaughlin says:

      Yes for real, this small sentence of 11 years is appalling for such a hideous crime and does not align well with it.  Especially, considering that the maximum of 15 years could have been afforded to the killer of "DJ Jazzy B". As for provocation that merely existed in this case, what was more evident was his ‘jealous and uncontrolled rage".  At the end of 11 years the killer will still have life, but where is the true justice for Jazzy’s life that was taken so tragically and untimely.  11 years is a small price to pay for someone’s precious life that was taken away.  This should be protested by his family, friends, loved ones and other caring persons of the general public. 

  23. So Sad... says:

    Cayman has changed.  Old times – you had a beef, you had a fist fight.  Today, you have a beef, its f-ing Russian roulette…  Does the opponent have a fist – or is he a chicken-shit with a knife or a gun…

    Is there ANY reason to walk around with this???
    3 Star Ratchet Knife - Click Image to Close

    Popular ratchet Knife Sold in Jamaica. 100% authentic.

    OK, folks, let’s gang behind the police and get them to take EVERY weapon off the streets…

    If not,can I get a license for an AK-47?


  24. Hurt says:

    He will be out in 1500 days

    • Anonymous says:

      Wow!  11 years for a man’s life!  No wonder murders are becoming a very common crime in Cayman, recently……little punishment!!  What is wrong with our Justice System?  This is another broken organization that needs fixing!