Foiled cash van robber gets ten years in jail

| 03/04/2018 | 63 Comments
Cayman News Service

Jerome Cunningham is led from the court in handcuffs

(CNS): The man who tried but failed to rob a cash van in George Town in February 2017 has been given a total of ten years in prison following a guilty plea in the middle of his trial. Jerome Cunningham (25) tried to hold up a van on Eastern Avenue after a cash collection from the Jamaican National Money Transfer office at Crown Square. Armed with a loaded Ruger P95DC, Cunningham shot the security guard, who was wearing a bullet proof vest. Despite being hit he was able to get into the secure van with the cash and close up the doors, foiling Cunningham’s plan.

The guard was wounded as the bullet penetrated his vest and caused an injury to his chest.

Cunningham fled on foot but the next day he handed himself into police, who also recovered the gun he has used in the attempted stick-up.

Cunningham pleaded guilty almost from the beginning to the attempted robbery and possessing the loaded gun but had denied the attempted murder charges, which resulted in the setting of a trial date. But after the trial got underway, discussions between defence lawyers and prosecutors led to that charge being changed to GBH and Cunningham then accepted his guilt.

As the judge handed down the collection of sentences to run concurrently, he credited Cunningham for his guilty pleas with a full discount and gave him a total term of ten years. He also recommended that the former barber, who is from Jamaica, be deported on his release.

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Category: Courts, Crime

Comments (63)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    SMH! How is this even possible? This is the same sentence Michael Jefferson got for a non functional unregistered gun. How could this guy also get 10 years for shooting someone during a robbery? Something is wrong with the justice system. I agree with the mandatory 10 years for the fire arm but why on earth would the other charges run concurrent?

    • Jotnar says:

      The other penalties are concurrent because all the offences were committed as part of a single crime, so it’s really the most serious that apply. That’s a fairly standard principle of criminal law in the British inspired system. As for why the sentence is the same as Jefferson’s, bear in mind Jefferson pleaded not guilty so wasn’t eligible for a 30% discount. Has this man only been charged with the firearms possession he would probably have only got 7 years.

  2. Anonymous says:

    jamaican again committing crime on foreigm soil? govt leaders, are you listening??

  3. Anonymous says:

    Yea and Donald Trump is the bad guy because he wants to deport *illegal immigrants * starting with felony convicts..

    Libtardation destroys everything. And it will destroy Cayman soon enough.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Come on now 2:32pm….

    You damn well know that “expat” is the preferred term of white immigrants and foreigners.
    How dare you attempt to align them with Jamaicans, Filipinos and the like?
    The nerve!!

  5. Anonymous says:

    So if the guard had been killed but he said he didn’t mean it kill him would it have made a difference? This is shameful. If pointing a gun at someone ( who isn’t armed)and firing isn’t intent to kill then I don’t know what is!

    • soft on crime says:

      This is ridiculous. WTF this why Cayman has so much crime. The Judge only gave the minimum for a firearm offence. Robbery and GBH carries life imprisonment.The guard was shot. He had a firearm and used it. Wounding the guard. Cayman courts are soft on serious crime. The Judge should be deported too because this sentence is also a crime.

    • West Bay Premier says:

      Anonymous 4:51pm , how smart you can see that , but the Judge and Prosecution couldn’t . Something is really wrong with them or the system.

  6. Anonymous says:

    But God forbid you get caught with 10lbs of weed…

  7. Anonymous says:

    We seemed hell bent on becoming another Jamaica.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Even if he is deported to Jamaica, which I doubt, he will be back in a canoe 2 weeks later after having a good laugh with his friends over how soft Cayman is on crime, how cheap and available dope at Northward is, and how Monday is all you can eat pizza night.

    We desperately need politicians and judges that understand that the current sentencing practices are hurting the safety of all of us and are willing to get tough on crime.

    • Anonymous says:

      Just Possession without a license carries at least 10 years..!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      We must be the laughing stock of the criminal underworld in the Caribbean/Latin American region. Our prisoners live better than most lower class citizens in the rest of the region!

      They’ll be coming by the boatloads to commit crimes knowing they will get a slap on the wrist if caught! We are sitting ducks with zero boarder control or protection and a complete joke of a legal/prison system!

    • Anonymous says:

      where is all you can eat pizza on Mondays???

  9. Anonymous says:

    He should have received a more severe sentence just on the basis of possession of a loaded fire arm! I just can’t understand how sentencing runs in this country!

  10. Anonymous says:

    I am disappointed but not surprised by this ridiculously soft sentence. This criminal will be out of the Ritz Northward in less than 5 years given the our ridiculous Conditional Release Law and Board which sees to it that 85% of these criminals are let loose after serving a fraction of their sentences.

    It is long past time that our soft on crime politicians got their acts together to change our laws to severely limit our judges discretion to give concurrent sentences and to end the ability of the Conditional Release Board to release these violent criminals back onto our streets.



    This is a tap on the wrist, this is why crime will never get any better around here. SMH!

    Deportation should have been the first option, send his ass back home.
    it’s so sad to see how our money is wasted feeding those criminals like him, and this is why the CI. Hotel aka Her Majesty Prison will forever be full & putting a BIG strain on Gov’t pocket.

  12. Anonymous says:

    wow, the silence from the expats that constantly bash Caymanians is deafening. He’s one of yours mate. An expat is an expat.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thought the same thing. Crickets.

    • Anonymous says:

      The Cayman criminal system has dealt with him, what more do you want? Are you saying that it’s not good enough? Your own system? Thought everything Cayman was just peachey……Just stirring the pot methinks.

    • Anonymous says:

      What do you want expats to say exactly? What does an expat is an expat mean?

      • Anonymous says:

        You know what the hell it it means, stop playing ignorant.

        • Anonymous says:

          I don’t actually. Ignorant? Ok.

          • Anonymous says:

            It means an expatriate is a person who lives outside their native country. This one just happens to be from Jamaica. You Brits and Canadians are, like it or not, classified the same as this fella, so he is one of you. Hence an expat is an expat. You can’t pick and choose who an expat is, only when it suits your little agenda.

            …and yes, you’re being ignorant.

            • Anonymous says:

              So it’s meant literally? Seriously, that’s it? I give you the benefit of the doubt that you mean something beyond the banal and I’m ignorant… lol.

              • Anonymous says:

                O c’mon, not ignorant, you’re really bright, that’s why you left home to make a better life here….in paradise!

                Isn’t it great!


    • Anonymous says:

      Are Jamaicans expats ?

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh goodness. Wants a dip with that chip on your shoulder? A criminal is a criminal. I don’t care where he is from.

      • Anonymous says:

        I do because we have laws and systems expressly designed to stop foreign criminals from coming and staying here, and spend millions on it every year.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Attention politicians/courts: This is the kind of BS that is sinking this island. As bad as the police are, at least they caught this scumbag. His sentence is appalling. Do something about it or we will vote for someone who will. If you think we the public are ignorant of your complete lack of accountability while this place goes down in flames, you are mistaken.

    • Anonymous says:

      The Police didn’t catch the guy, he turned himself in. You’re giving too much credit here.

      • Rick says:

        And why do you think he turned himself in and gave up his gun? You think he found Jesus?

        • Anonymous says:

          I don’t know who are what he found, but I know this is the strangest thing I have ever heard!

          Turning himself in? LOL

          Don’t get it, just weird. Somethings up.

  14. Anonymous says:

    The chances of money vans being held up just went higher with this sentence.

  15. Anonymous says:

    10 years just for having a gun in Cayman then add all this other stuff including attempted murder and what do you get? 10 years of course!

    • Jotnar says:

      Except it’s 10 years if you plead innocent – plead guilty and its 7. And they dropped the attempted murder charge. I think 10 is pretty light for shooting someone as well, and the fault is no doubt in dropping the murder charge in order to secure a conviction, but do get your facts straight and be applied at the sentence for the right reasons.

  16. MM says:

    Should be deported immediately to serve his prison term in JA – even if we have to fund his incarceration in JA it would still be much cheaper than the CI$70k a year we spend on them here.

    Why can’t the Cayman gov and the Jamaica gov make some arrangements that whenever a JA national commits an offence and is sentenced to imprisonment they serve their time back home and we just foot the bill? It is cheaper and will free-up some prison cells for our local deadbeats.

    • Anonymous says:

      Even better, send them to Cuba and have Jamaica foot the bill (we can tax the remittances if Jamaica is unwilling to pay voluntarily).

  17. Anonymous says:

    He had intent to kill but okay he plead guilty. Such a terrible sentence. Should be at least 30!

  18. Anonymous says:

    Lack of stiffer penalties and leniency of sentences handed down in our courts along with lack of proper due diligence on behalf of our Immigration Department, are part of the problem for the rise in violent crimes in our country. These two areas must be sorted before we can see any reduction in criminal activities in our country.

  19. Anonymous says:

    No more concurrent sentences! Serve time for each offence, not lumping them all together, which sets the belief that no matter how severe, or how many offences committed, the penalty is only effectively ONE sentence! This is madness.

  20. Anonymous says:

    So he gets the same sentence for shooting someone during a robbery as you would get for just having an unregistered gun…

  21. West Bay Premier says:

    Why didn’t he get another 10 year sentence for attemted murder too ?
    Didn’t he attempt to murder the guard but the vest save his life ?
    Something is really really wrong here .

  22. OneVoice says:

    What kind of message is this sending, do crime and get slap on your had. If that guard did not have the vest on he would have been DEAD or seriously injured. Come on our courts get tough or TUFF on crime. The intent was their .let me stop as I write I get mad.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Something is wrong here with our due diligence with these people coming to our shores.

  24. SMH says:

    Another weak sentence by the courts. Cunningham shot a guard with a bullet proof vest the Mens Rea was present to cause significant injury and death to the security guard. Ten years was not enough for this type of scumbag. That could have been a private citizen without a vest. No guilty plea can replace life. SMH

  25. Anonymous says:

    10 years for grand theft auto, armed robbery and attempted murder? In the US this guy would be facing 25 years!

    • Anonymouse says:

      Wtf are you chatting about. GTA? Gbh is not attempted murder. Additionally, you realize that there are different sentencing guidlines across the US varying from state to state right? For f sake man, why is cns comment section so full of ppl who can’t read, can’t type, can’t differentiate between fact and opinion or all of the above. If you don’t know what you are talking about, kindly stfu. More over, what does US sentences have to do with the Cayman Islands? Are we a US dependent overseas territory? NO! Critical thinking… Try it.

      • Anonymous says:

        Shooting someone from close range in the chest with a ruger is not attempted murder!? Please do enlighten me as to what can be classed as attempted murder you crackhead.

        • Jotnar says:

          He didn’t say it wasn’t attempted murder – he pointed out the guy wasn’t convicted of attempted murder ( and he wasn’t even charged with GTA nor did he actually steal the vehicle). He has a valid point albeit made bluntly – lots of comments about what people think he should have been convicted of rather than what he was – and what they think sentence ranges should be for crimes rather than what they are. Calling him a crackhead is a bit unfair, especially when compared to the original comment which seemed to think he should be charged for stealing the vehicle.

        • Anonymous says:

          I rarely debate with ppl that struggle with basic reading comprehension as my response will require them to develop those skils. I’ll keep it short, my OPINION on what constitutes attempted murder has nothing to do with the FACT that he was convicted for GBH. I’m not saying that his sentencing was appropriate. Im asking what insight does comparing his sentencing for gbh in CAYMAN to sentencing for attempted murder in a nation who has the highest incarceration rate per capita provide? Nothing. Save your name calling for ppl you debate in person so they at least have the option to strike you in your disrespectful mouth.

    • Anonymous says: mean 25 yrs to life .

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