Double possession earns gunman 14 years

| 20/12/2016 | 24 Comments

(CNS): Jose ‘Peto’ Sanchez (29) was given a 14-year jail term Tuesday following his second conviction for the illegal possession of a loaded unlicensed firearm. Sanchez was given an eight-year sentence for possessing a loaded illegal 9mm pistol when he fired the weapon in Cruz Lane last June, but he was given 14 years for having what was believed to be the same gun on a second occasion, a few weeks later, at a bar in Bodden Town. Sanchez, who is well known to police, has never been convicted of any serious offences but he has been charged with murder twice and walked free.

This time, however, there was no escape for the local man, who is suspected by police intelligence to be a prominent gang member.

As Justice Charles Quin handed down the sentence, he said that on the first occasion Sanchez had gone looking for David Bodden and fired three shots into the ground and air to frighten people. The judge said it was “menacing and violent” and the intention to scare worked as the police had struggled to find witnesses willing to given evidence about what they had seen.

Justice Quin said that on the second occasion at the Everglo Bar in Bodden Town some four weeks later, Sanchez displayed a “brazen and arrogant” attitude as he tried to walk into a bar with a loaded weapon. When the police arrived, Sanchez had tried several times to offload the gun on to Sean Dunbar and when he refused, Sanchez simply pressed it into the stomach of Dunbar’s girlfriend before walking away with “callous disregard”, leaving the woman terrified and confused with a gun in her hand, the judge added.

Pointing again to the rise of gun crime in Cayman, Justice Quin said he needed to impose a deterrent sentence as people only carry loaded guns if they intend to kill or seriously harm someone. He said he could not ignore the fact that four weeks earlier in Cruz Lane Sanchez was using the same weapon to intimidate and frighten people.

The judge said that given the circumstances of the case, Sanchez’ previous convictions, for ganja possession, escaping custody, assault and carrying an offensive weapon, as well as the earlier possession of the same weapon in Cruz Lane, a sentence of 14 years was appropriate — four years more than the mandatory minimum term. He ordered that the 8-year sentence for the earlier possession would run concurrently. The judge also ordered that the gun which was recovered by police be destroyed.

Both Dunbar and his girlfriend, Ashley Terry, who had also been charged with possession and accessory over the same gun at the Everglo Bar, both evaded custodial sentences because of the extenuating circumstances and their significant assistance in the successful prosecution of Sanchez.

Sanchez, who has been on remand since his arrest last summer, has spent several years behind bars despite not having any serious convictions. But two previous murder charges led to the West Bay man serving time on remand.

In March 2010 he was remanded in custody when he was just 23 after he was charged with the murder of Alrick Peddie in West Bay, along with two other men. He remained in jail for well over a year until he was acquitted in July 2011 for lack of evidence. He was remanded in custody again in 2014 for the murder of Solomon (Solly) Webster, a special Olympian who was gunned down in a Daisy Lane yard during a fight. Once again, however, Sanchez was acquitted some ten months later when the court could not be sure of his guilt.

But Sanchez was taken back into custody just weeks following that acquittal in connection with the gun found in Bodden Town last July and was also charged some time later in connection with the Cruz Lane incident. He as remained in jail ever since.

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Category: Courts, Crime

Comments (24)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    He’s Definitely a Caymanian just ask the MLA from North Side. HIS mother is a Miller Dating back several generations. His people are from here, he was born here, so why wouldn’t he be a Caymanian?

  2. earl says:

    He has been working hard to get there (Northward) his destination for awhile..he finally reached..congrats… now stay there!!!!!!

  3. MM says:

    14 years is actually not a very long time… especially since 14 prison years are actually only 9 twelve-month years…

    I’m disappointed; can we have him locked up for at least 20? After-all, it’s Christmas and the public deserve a nice present.

  4. Anonymouse says:

    Well Karma has come around. You are now where you belong. Wanna be bad ? Take dat !

  5. Anonymous says:

    I really hope he screws up in prison and gets more time. Career criminal; take him to the gallows.

  6. Anonymous says:

    This is really becoming annoying that deportation order statement, are you really blind and refuse to acknowledge that there are some bad Caymanians!

    Just like in the rest of the world.

    • Anonymous says:

      How do you know Sanchez is in fact a Caymanian. Is anyone checking? Even if he is a Caymanian, could he and should he have his status revoked? Is anyone checking?

      In that circumstance the continuing repetition of the statement as to whether or not he should be deported is entirely appropriate.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Your a foul one, Mr. Grinch

  8. Anonymous says:

    “Well done” to our justice system. Who wants to be next?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Merry Christmas

  10. Anonymous says:

    Deportation order?

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