(CNS): A young man who was described by his lawyer as having the mental capacity of a 9-year-old child was jailed Thursday for 27 months for an opportunist street mugging in George Town two years ago. Charles Walton, who was 18 when he robbed a woman on the West Bay Road, cutting her purse straps with a machete, had been on a crime spree on the night in question. It had started with a burglary at the Cabana restaurant in George Town, where he and several of his friends stole beer and tequila from an unlocked cabinet in the outside bar.
While most of Walton’s friends had confined their offending to the petty theft of $144 worth of booze, which was caught on CCTV, he went on later that evening to mug the woman as she walked along the road near to Cayman Reef Resort. The court heard that Walton was “drunk and charged up” and wanted more to drink when he decided to take the victim’s bag. When she tried to hold on to her possessions, a tussle ensued, and that was when Walton cut the straps with the machete and made off with her bag, leaving the victim with a dislocated finger.
Othneil Williams, who was part of the group with Watlon, was convicted of handling stolen goods after he took a Tissot watch from the woman’s bag when Walton returned to his friends with the loot. Laying out the mitigating factors on Williams’ behalf, his lawyer had described him as acting impulsively and “like a magpie grabbing a shiny object”.
Meanwhile, Walton’s difficulties were aired in the court when his lawyer outlined his serious mental health issues from a young age as he suffers from ADHA disorder, among other things. “We can be sure that prison is the wrong place for him,” his lawyer told the court.
But given the severity of the crime, Justice Charles Quin had no option but to send Walton to jail. The judge said this was a “nasty and unpleasant serious crime” that left the victim shocked and scared.
The judge considered Walton’s mental health problems and his late plea in mitigation, but given his long list of convictions, he handed down a term of two years and three months and a concurrent sentence for the alcohol burglary of three months. Time served was ordered to be taken into consideration.
Williams, who admitted handling the watch, which the court heard was returned to the victim, was given a six-month suspended sentence for that offence, alongside a 12-month probation order with 100 hours of community service for his part in the theft from the Cabana.
Andrianna Ebanks and Darrell Williams, who were also involved in stealing the beer and tequila, were also given a 12-month probation order and directed to complete 100 hours of community service after they pled guilty.