Men acquitted of murder

| 29/11/2011

ozz douglas_0.JPG(CNS): The murder conviction against Patrick McField, Osbourne Douglas and Brandon Leslie was quashed by the Court of Appeal on Tuesday, but as the three men walked from the court to be greeted by emotional family and friends, Osbourne Douglas (left) was immediately re-arrested by the police over charges relating to conspiracy for murder in connection with the fatal shooting of Jason Christian, who was shot and killed in Crew Road in September. McField and Leslie, however, walked away from the courts after all three men charged and convicted for the murder of Omar Samuels were acquitted and their life sentences set aside.

The Court of Appeal judges said they would set down their full reasons in writing but in the interim they indicated that they believed the judge had erred in law when he allowed the case against the three men to go before a jury, despite the half-way 'no case' submission made by the defendants.

Having been in prison for more than three years, the men were immediately free but the drama continued outside the court house. Police officers were waiting as the men left the courtroom jails and arrested Douglas for conspiracy in connection with the Christian killing, leaving his mother distraught. Police officials soon confirmed that a 25 year old man had been arrested outside the courts in connection with the gang related shooting, which occurred while the George Town man was in jail.

Meanwhile, Leslie and McField celebrated their release and acquittal with friends and family, stating publicly that they had always been innocent.

During the appeal the defence teams for the three men had argued that the crown's case was so inconsistent that it should never have been put before a jury. They pointed to the enormous discrepancies between the eye witness account of where the shooting allegedly occurred, in stark contrast to the forensic indications of where Samuels was shot.

The scientific evidence pointed to an entirely different place, as revealed by the shell cases fired from the weapon that killed 28-year-old Samuels, and the trail of blood from where he was shot in the leg to where he eventually collapsed and bled out from his severed femoral artery.

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  1. Antidote says:

    The professional ability of the RCIPS has been seriously dimished. Gone are the good years and some of the best or most commit and competent officers. We are now left with a bunch of complainers who spent years crying for leadership and when promoted and placed in positions found out they simply are not capable leadership. We are now left with the only option to import capable officers which apparently is not working out too well either. One the main reasons for this problem of leadership We have also failed to sufficently remove another undesirable element and has unfortunately imported and added more numbers to their ranks. Not good for Cayman on a whole. Those incharge should have listened carefully to the warnings and not dismiss then as nothing.

    • Anonymous says:

      Again, I say, the courts are either letting guilty people go free or the RCIP is arresting/charging the wrong people.

      Whichever way you take it, THE KILLERS ARE STILL OUT THERE.

      Justice, Cayman style. I for one have no confidence in these institutions. What a joke.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Damn I guess these names fell from the sky. I hope these free, young, no nonsense, innocent, hard working men do better and make a positive contribution from here on out with this unbeiievable second chance and you rejoicing mothers may you continue to pray NOT for freedom but for a change a ways, courage to except reality and mercy from the only judgment that counts.

  3. Diamond D says:

    RCIPS is a failed institution run and managed by even bigger failures. We can not honestly say we were not warn for sometime now several citizens and ex officers have express their concerns about current management and its incompetence yet those in charge are willfuly neglecting the concerns of the greater public. They seem  to be only concern with importing more foreign officers from Jamaica and the UK two Jurisdiction with serious problems of their own. An all our no use politicians can contribute is more of our Money and passing more draconian laws  and measures against the public. We ourselves have failed in our duty to hold them and the Police accountable and responsible.

  4. noname says:

    Those people who live in high places who attempt to ride on the back and curry favor of a corrupt and unfair system inevitably will come in conflict with the natural course of what is just and what is right are thereby most often blinded by their own self importance and unfortunate consequence.

  5. Anonymous says:

    JUST in Time for Christmas!! I know I will sleep much better. RCIP and the Justice system has proven once again what they are good for….ABSOLUTELY Nothing… Let me rephrase that they are really good and catchin drivers without seatbelts and uhh..that seems to be about it..

  6. Concerned says:

    We can blame the the Legal Department, but the police are the first people at the scene of the crime. Their ability to investigate, collect evidence and get detailed statements are vital to the prosecutions case. Often the police contaminate the crime scene through their incompetence. The country has a battery of very poorly trained officers who can't handle anthing more complicated than a minor traffic offence.

  7. What? says:

    Good Heavens!!

    The Police and the Legal Department here in Cayman really are providing the country with a huge injustice. How can they get it so wrong, so many times and not be held accountable??

    The wrong decisions that these people make are life changing for all concerned with the cases they fowl up… where is the accountabilty for these awful people in positions of trust??  

  8. Anonymous says:

    You fail to remember that a jury heard theevidence and were satisfied beyond reasonable doubt.  The Appeals judges are saying that they should not have been satisfied beyond reasonable doubt.  In other words they say that the jury got it wrong.

    No disrespect but appeals judges can also get it wrong – there are volumes of law books that say so.  Please consider taking this one to the Privy Council.  Really, did the police, prosecutors, trial judge and jury really get it wrong?

    • Anonymous says:

      seriously? please note they were let off due to inconsistencies. what sense would it make to have this case sent to privy council if 1+1 doesnt add up to 2? we're probably better off saving that money and only hope they take advantage (positively) of the second shot at life god granted them. we can only hope & pray.


  9. Anonymous says:

    uh -oh spaghettios…..

  10. Soapbox Sally says:

    Anyone know the % of murders/disappearances that remain unsolved in the last 10 years?  That would make alarming reading I suspect….in fact I would be surprised if the percentage of convictions hit the double digits.

    A sad state of affairs

  11. Anonymous says:

    ….and yet, the RCIP continues to appeal to the public to provide them with information. Why on earth would someone put themselves and their family on the line if the police together with the crown time after time fail to make a solid case?

    BTW – I recently saw an ad in the paper where they were looking for someone to run the forensic lab – seemingly no special qualifications required. I thought that was odd! 

  12. Dred says:

    Catch n Release program at its best.

    • Anonymous says:

      Catch implies that they had the right person who committed the crime.  All the police does is arrest who they think is the likely suspect and tries to pin the crime to them.  This is outragous and should be condemned.  The result is that the guilty goes free and the innocent is left with a tarnished reputation.  The police needs to do investigation and stop the profiling.  Investigation is what solves crime.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Justice has now been done. These good boys can now get on with the rest of their lives.

  14. Anonymous says:

    cayman justice……..

  15. Anonymous says:

    how u goin arrest osbourne and he was in jail @ the time that murder took place plus u dont have any 1 holding or charged for the murder?

  16. Susan Cowans says:


    My heartfelt thanks to the local lawyers, the QC's and the 3 most Honourable Appeal Judges. Justice has finally been served for the three youngmen that were wrongfully convicted for a murder they did not committ.  I will continue to pray for Christine that God will comfort her and that Omar's killer(s) will be identified and brought to justice. I will continue to pray for God to have mercy on Omar's soul.  He did not deserve to be killed just like the youngmen who were convicted did not deserve to be incaserated for his murder while the real killer(s) went free. Three wrongs can never make one right. Tonight we rejoice, but there is no real celebration as there is a life that has been lost so we will just rejoice that God is real, He is still in charge and everything in done in His own time.

    The hatred and the anger I felt nearly consumed me.  I had to seek forgiveness from God for my feelings but in order for me to get forgiveness, I had to first forgive those that tresspass against me.  There will be many negative comments from the haters but I wish to tell them that hatred is like cancer, it devours you and before you haste to judge, remember to change shoes.

    I want to offer special thanks to the following people for helping me survive the years that my son was incaserated; Collin Cowans, my husband, mother, Ella Archbold, step-father, Arnulfo Archbold, my grand-daughter, Brooklyn, brothers, Eddie, Nelson, and Wayne, precious friends, Wilma Ebanks, Andrea Ebanks, Sylvia Ebanks, Romario Davis, Tanya Edwards, Donna McLean, Lori Ann Welcome, Sherry Ann Smith, Angie McLaughlin, Aileen Bodden, Mr. Roy Bodden, Drs. Paula Anderson, Monica Lawrence, Ansel Tempral, Maureen Robinson, Mitch Ebanks, Perry George, Wendy Lauer, Ms. Monica Singh-Miller, Sofia Tobbutt, Fernando McLaughlin, Allison Anglin; extended family, Dean Kelly, Melissa Hall, Esmie Hall, Ezekiel Carter, Maxine Cowans, aunt Doris, 3ABN prayer warriors, my friend Verona and her church in Florida also my SDA church brothers and sisters in the US, pastor Foster of Jamaica; without your prayers, words of encouragement, advice, support and friendship, I truly would not have had the strength to hold fast.

    Again, thank you all and God bless.

    Susan Cowans, Brandon Ebanks' mother

  17. Best served cold.. says:

    Another dark day in the history of the Cayman 'justice' system. My heart goes out for both the victim, his family, and the three men subject of another misguided, poorly conducted witch hunt on Grand Cayman. No Cayman, there is nothing Grand about it anymore. Somewhere, the killer is roaming free, either because he/she was never caught, or he/she just walked out the court door.

    If the likes of Gadhaffi and Hussein can be brought to account, why is it so hard for the normally very opinionated and vociferous Cayman public to demand results and tenable convictions? The senior prosecutor is just that, senior, but among about 10 people. A slick suit does not an effective lawyer make. The blame here must be laid at the correct door. It is not just Baines, although his contempt for the hosts of his diving holiday becomes more palpable by the day, but also the legal department, whose responsibility it is to make sure cases are suitable for trial before going anywhere near a court. 'They' are the legal experts, and they HAVE TO take responsibility for cases going to, and succeeding at, court. The sloppy 'that'll do' attitude is simply unacceptable in a 'modern' society.

    Are any of the legal department accountable or responsible to anyone? It seems not. These people are your servants Cayman. If anyone XXXX it is these wanna-be's for continuing to draw handsome salaries at your expense for not performing the task with which they are, er, tasked. You deserve better Cayman, and you have the power.

  18. Anonymous says:

    3 more oops 2 more walk. Its like a rotating door. Keep arresting amd re-arresting and convicting and aquitting til you finally get a solid conviction is what I see the police doing. I wonder how many more must die before they start doing real police work.

  19. Bushwacker says:

    Chalk-up another great victory for Commissioner Baines and his Ace Detectives, especially for his wonderful training Instructor of Evidence Collection he went out of his way to bring to the island as he stated on Rooster. They have maintained a perfect record in obtaining acquittals for Murder! – Any rational country would have sacked the Commissioner and Public Prosecutor by now. When will it be enough? I guess that will be when we have no more economy to pay them.

    • Anonymous says:

      Correct me if I'm wrong, but Commissioner Baines has been in post since June 2009 (two and a half years ago) and this crime was committed, and these people imprisoned, more than three years ago. If this is the case, I fail to see how the quashing of the conviction can have anything to do with Commissioner Baines and the people he has put in post.

      • Anonymous says:

        You fail to see because you don't want to see. Obviously the investigation that led to their being arrested and charged was conducted under Baines' watch.

    • Anonymous says:

      Don't listen to the double talk on Rooster…

  20. Anonymous says:

    Can the UK step in and adminster to our legal system as well please

  21. Anonymous says:

    What in the world are the public to think about the legal system in Cayman?

    • Moofer says:

      Thoughts hmmmmm? Try these:

      The public is either trapped in Cayman and lamenting their lot in life, or they are portable and they are packing up and leaving. The more moneyed people who leave, the worse this is going to get.

      The police and the Crown are like a restaurant that serves only one meal, ever: failure, served cold and stale, because it’s the same failure from last year, and the year before, and the year before…

      The war on crime is over. Crime won. The losing team has left the stadium.

      That’s my list so far.

  22. RIP Jason says:

    I hope Jason gets justice…no matter what he did!

  23. So says:

    So will we ever know who killed Omar? Will he ever have justice?



    • alperva says:

      No, you won’t.

      No, he won’t.

      I’m very sorry about that, but it’s Cayman for you.

    • The Beaver says:

      No, probably not.  The police and the Legal Department are far too incompetentto find, arrest and prosecute the right person(s) – so you'll have to put up a little bit longer (forever) with their Keystone Cops modus operandi.  The Beaver