Juvenile on Capital Murder Charges to Stand Trial at High Court

The 17-year-old high school drop-out, who was arrested and charged for the November 2017 death of 9-year-old Ariel Bolah, was on Monday committed to stand trial at the High Court.

Ariel, who went missing on November 10, 2017 was found dead in a bushy area close to where she lived at Frequente in the southern parish of St. George, by a search party on the following day.

Police investigations led to the former JW Fletcher Catholic Secondary School student being taken into custody and later charged for the indictable offence of Capital Murder.

The Preliminary Inquiry (PI) into the charge commenced before Chief Magistrate Tamara Gill on December 8, 2017, at the St. George’s No. 1 Magistrate’s Court and concluded with the court finding enough evidence for the matter to be taken for trial before a judge and jury.

A total of 11 witnesses including 3 police officers, doctors and civilians, were called to give evidence to the court in support of the state’s case against the teenager, who was unrepresented throughout the PI, which was led by Director of Public Prosecution.

The young girl, who was a student of the Grand Anse Roman Catholic School, was reported missing to the police by her mother after she did not return home from school.

One of her friends reported seeing the 9-year-old walking in the vicinity of her home, clad in her school uniform, school shoes in her hands and a water boots in her feet.

According to the friend, a male figure was seen walking very close to her as the young girl headed home.

THE NEW TODAY understands that the name of the teenager, who will take his 18th birthday sometime in August, is expected to be among those on the list of cases for the upcoming September Criminal Assizes.

Since his arrest last November, the teenager has been afforded certain restrictions and protections under the Juvenile Justice Act.

However, that protection would no longer apply when his matter comes up for high court trial as he would be treated as a young adult.

However, it is understood that if found guilty of the offences, the Juvenile Justice Act makes special provisions that the trial judge should be guided by in terms of what sentence can be handed down on him.

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