54-year-old Joel Charles of Beausejour, St. George, will spend the next 12 years and 9 months of his life locked up at Her Majesty’s Prison for the May 2013 murder of Cecilia St. Louis, a 44 year-old mother of five.
St. Louis’ body, covered with pieces of board and galvanize, was discovered May 25th, 2013 lying face down with multiple lacerations to her face and arms in an abandoned pillar hole close to her place of abode in the village of Beausejour.
According to the autopsy report, the deceased died from blunt force trauma to her head, which fractured her skull bone and jaw in multiple areas causing brain hemorrhages.
An apologetic Charles, who pleaded guilty to the crime earlier this year, appeared for sentencing before Madam Justice Price-Findlay last week Wednesday at the St. George’s High Court Number 1.
Attorney-at-Law Peter David represented Charles, a chef by profession and a father of 12, who was sentenced to 15 years behind bars, with the High Court giving consideration to the time he has already spent incarcerated.
Senior Crown Counsel, Howard Pinnock, who was, sitting in for Crisan Greenidge, the initial State Prosecutor who handled the matter, reminded the court that Charles, who has been behind bars since May 25, 2013 admitted to hitting the now deceased mother of five in the back of her head with a flashlight that he was carrying at the time.
His Attorney did not dismiss the seriousness of the case but, in his mitigation, attributed Charles’ actions to the consumption of too much alcohol.
David said the picture painted by the Social Inquiry report shows that Charles, who has worked as a Chef at the General Hospital for 20 years and in the same capacity at the Mt. Gay Mental Hospital for 14 years, is a man that did fairly well, went to work and took care of his children, but also a man that has a dark side when he consumes alcohol.
In light of this, David asked the court to grant his client alcohol rehabilitation and anger management counseling, which was also included in the judgment handed down by Justice Price-Findlay.
THE NEW TODAY understands that the deceased was a close associate of one named Jacinta Mason, who had just ended a visiting relationship with the now convicted man.
Last week Wednesday’s hearing revealed that the Thursday night prior to her death, Cecilia, together with Jacinta Mason and her daughter were seen running as they were chased by the convicted man who was armed with a knife.
All three women sought refuge at a neighbour’s house and while there Mason was shocked to look across in the direction of her home only to see it engulfed in flames.
This newspaper understands that the Wednesday before the incident occurred, Charles visited Mason at her home but she did not wish to see him and he proceeded to kick down the front door before leaving the premises.
Sources said the wooden house, valued approximately EC$18, 000, was built for Mason by members of the Special Services Unit (SSU) as part of the Community Police initiative of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF).
Charles was also charged with arson, which he pleaded guilty to earlier this year.