British Virgin Islands

Tuesday, Jan 19, 2021

Not a flight risk! Teen on gun charge granted

Not a flight risk! Teen on gun charge granted

A local teen accused of carrying a firearm without a license has been offered $50,000 signed bail. Nineteen-year-old T’Quan Bodkin of Huntums Ghut, Tortola received the bail offer when he appeared before Magistrate Christilyn Benjamin via virtual hearing on Tuesday.

He was not made to answer to the charge since the matter is indictable; therefore triable at the High Court.

Allegations


Prosecutors allege that members of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force were in the area of the Waterfront Drive jetty about 11:45 am on Friday when they saw Bodkin.

He was reportedly walking on to the ferry dock in what was perceived as a “fidgety”, suspicious manner carrying a backpack.

The accused was approached by the officers who claimed they smelt what they believed to be marijuana so they accosted and searched the teen.

Firearm, Ski mask discovered/ Items belong to cousin


The Crown said the search led to the discovery of a .38 special revolver in Bodkins backpack. It is alleged that police also found a ski mask, one long sleeve shirt, and a pair of long pants.

After being cautioned, Bodkin allegedly responded that neither the backpack nor the items within the bag belonged to him. He further told officers that he was merely delivering the backpack to the boat to send to his cousin on Virgin Gorda.

Officers then took Bodkin to the Road Town Police Station where a further search was conducted which revealed several pairs of blue latex gloves in his back pocket, along with $750.

The teen was later interviewed where he denied all allegations against him.

The RVIPF subsequently charged Bodkin for carrying a firearm without a license.

No objection to bail


Prosecutors did not object to bail.

Magistrate Benjamin said the court felt the accused was not a flight risk and would attend all of his court dates.

While noting that the offence is one that is very serious, Magistrate Benjamin also said Bodkin was bailable considering that the police had confiscated the firearm.

Bodkin, who is represented by attorney Stephen Daniels, must surrender all his travel documents and will have to report to the Road Town Police Station on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays between 6 am and 5 pm.

He is scheduled to return to court on Wednesday, January 27 next year.

Second gun accused remanded until Wednesday


Meanwhile, in a second and separate matter involving a gun, 24-year-old Kenaz Hazel of a Purcell Estate was remanded until Wednesday.

Hazel, who is known to the court, appeared to be unrepresented when he appeared before Magistrate Benjamin for carrying an unlicensed firearm.

During his appearance on Tuesday, he informed the court that he was being represented but his attorney was not present at the time.

His matter was therefore adjourned till tomorrow.

He is being held at the Road Town Police Station.

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