Rape charged dropped against schoolteacher

 Denroy Anthony Charles – is now a free man

Denroy Anthony Charles – is now a free man

Police have decided against pursuing a rape charge brought in August against a schoolteacher who has represented the island in cricket.

Denroy Anthony Charles of Tivoli, St. Andrew was arrested in early August as the mother of his 6-year old child complained that he had raped her.

The arrest of Charles sparked off a war of words between leading Executive members of the Grenada Union of Teachers (GUT) including President Lyden Lewis and his deputy Findley “Scholar” Jeffrey and journalist Hamlet Mark, the Senior Media Advisor to Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell.

Mark who has denied having a personal relationship with the victim was identified as the person who drove the complainant to the Grenville Police station to file the report and then drove her down to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) who took charge of the probe.

The victim has often been seen in Mark’s company and allegedly drives his vehicle on a regular basis.

A top police source told this newspaper that the matter was withdrawn based on representation made by the complainant.

He spoke of the woman taking the decision not to proceed with the rape charge since it was “having a great toll” on the families of both parties.

He said the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions was forced to intervene and requested a meeting with the woman in order to determine on whether to proceed or drop the case.

He pointed out that since the matter did not involve a minor but an adult it was decided that it was better to drop charges and allow the concerned parties “to go on with their private lives”.

“The woman said she did not want to go to court with the matter since she and the man (Charles) had been involved in a relationship for the better part of ten years and had a child together and if she went ahead with the case that it would have too much negative impact on the child and the two families”, he said.

The official said that Charles can consider himself “very lucky” since he has now been provided with an opportunity to return to the classroom in light of the shortage of qualified and skilled teachers in the nation.

The spokesman denied reports circulating in some quarters that the complainant did not use the word rape in her statement given to the police about the incident.

He said he had seen a copy of the statement and what the woman claimed is that she had not consented to what happened between them on the night of the alleged rape.

The State took the unusual step to call a special sitting of the St. Andrew’s Magistrate court on a Saturday to commit the accused to the Richmond Hill prison on remand for the alleged crime.

The 31-year-old national T20 cricketer walked out of the same court last Thursday a free man as the case was discontinued by the State.

If convicted, Charles could have faced 35 years behind prison bars.

Meanwhile, GUT Boss Lyden Lewis confirmed to this newspaper that he had spoken to his lawyer to look at possible defamation proceedings against Mark in connection with an article he wrote in connection with the rape charge in which he made certain references to him.

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