Suspect’s ability to plead in child sex case in question

| 17/08/2015 | 0 Comments
Cayman News Service

Cayman Islands court emblem

(CNS): A former teacher’s aid who is accused of sexually assaulting ten primary school children from a government school will undergo a psych evaluation before he enters any pleas regarding the accusations against him. The 19-year-old local man, who resigned his post when the allegations were first made, is also facing threats to his life. As a result of posts made about him on social media, the question of him ever receiving a fair hearing was raised by his defence attorney with the magistrate last week.

The man has been identified on Facebook but at present is not being formally named due to the possibility of identifying his very young alleged victims. He has not yet answered any of the charges.

The court has ordered that he sees a psychiatrist in order to establish if he is capable of understanding the charges and answering them, as well as choosing whether his case should be dealt with in Summary Court or in Grand Court.

Concern was raised about the teenager’s safety too. Noting that his client had received serious threats on some Facebook pages and other social media sites, the defendant’s attorney was quick to acknowledge the responsible way the local formal media had handled the reporting of the case.

Magistrate Angelyn Hernandez pointed out that in the modern internet world it was difficult to manage what was posted, but with orders in place to control the formal press, she said there must be ways to curtail internet postings because no trial should be conducted on social media.

The case was adjourned until 10 September, as court officials were asked to assist with speeding up the psych evaluation.

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Category: Courts, Crime

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