Killer claims diminished responsibility in WB shooting

| 04/09/2018 | 0 Comments
Cayman News Service

William Ian Rivers

(CNS): As the director of public prosecutions opened the case against William Ian Rivers (39) for the murder of Mark Travis “Hubba” Seymour (39) outside a West Bay restaurant in January 2017,  she told the jury that the defendant did not deny shooting the victim but claims that he was mentally impaired when he did so. Cheryll Richards QC, who is pursuing a charge of murder against him, said it was up to the prosecution to prove that Rivers knew what he was doing and that “his mental capacity was not substantially impaired when he fired the fatal shots” at Seymour, motivated by jealousy and inadequacy after his girlfriend asked the victim some days earlier to lend her money.

As she set out the case for the twelve men and women who will decide the case against Rivers and whether or not he was responsible at the time of the shooting, Richards said he had arrived at Super C’s around 2:00pm on 28 January 2017 on a bicycle.

The court heard that he propped the bike against a dumpster and then pulled a gun and fired multiple shots at Seymour, before returning to his home just yards away across the street. Rivers was said to have shot at several other people; one witness even described him trying to shoot down the police helicopter with the small handgun he used to kill Seymour, but no one else was injured.

The DPP told the court that as Rivers fired at Seymour, who was standing outside the restaurant, the first shot hit him in the neck. Seymour tried to run away towards the restaurant door, already badly wounded, but fell down. As he lay on the ground, Rivers fired more shots, stating, “You deserve this.” Other witnesses also heard Rivers say, “This is how I do dogs!” before firing more shots.

As he left the restaurant, Rivers pointed the gun at other people, who fled, and fired shots towards them, but did not hit anyone else. He then went home, where he fired at passers-by from the yard and at the helicopter before he barricaded himself in the home with his girlfriend, their children and his girlfriend’s mother.

When armed police arrived at the scene moments later, they found Seymour dead at the scene and learned that Rivers was in the house across the street. Police officers opened a phone line of communication with him, and after several hours he agreed to speak with one particular officer, who talked him out of the house before arresting him, at which point he said, “At least I am still standing.”

Richards said that during the journey to the detention centre, Rivers said quite a lot to the officers. He told them he had not slept for five days, which was later supported by another witness. He also said he felt lonely and upset, and that things could have been much worse, but because he loved his family he would never hurt them.

He also told police, “This is a poor man thing. See what happens when a man is poor.”

Richards told the jury that the motive for the crime was jealousy because shortly after Rivers had lost his job, his girlfriend had approached Seymour, a man she had at one time had a relationship with, to borrow money.

She said that in the days leading up to the killing Rivers had been anxious and angry, drinking heavily, and suffering with feelings of inadequacy over his financial situation, fuelled by jealousy when his girlfriend had asked Seymour for cash.

The case continues.

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