'Baby snatcher had help'


'Baby snatcher had help'

Despite guilty plea, father not convinced woman acted alone

Observer staff reporter

Friday, July 19, 2019

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ALTHOUGH the woman who snatched his day-old baby from the Victoria Jubilee Hospital in January has pleaded guilty, Sinclair Hutton is not convinced she acted alone.

Peta-Gay Ffrench, the woman who stole his child from the hospital in Kingston on January 9, pleaded guilty to child stealing yesterday and is to be sentenced on September 19.

When the matter was called up in the Supreme Court, Ffrench's attorney-at-law, Rachel Donaldson, told the court that her client would like to take a particular course of action.

Ffrench subsequently pleaded.

“I am guilty,” the soft-spoken woman said.

At that time, Justice Leighton Pusey asked her if she was forced to enter a plea.

“No,” she replied, before sitting in the dock and holding down her head.

The judge subsequently ordered a social inquiry report and an antecedent report.

Speaking to the Jamaica Observer yesterday, Hutton said he was glad she pleaded guilty, but said he felt others should've been charged for assisting her with stealing the child from the hospital.

“I am not convinced that she was acting alone, somebody assisted her,” Hutton said.

“She alone cyaan steal a baby from (Victoria) Jubilee (Hospital). When you go to Jubilee, as you enter dem search yuh. Yuh look fi whosoever yuh go to visit and when six o'clock come, security [personnel] come and say, 'Time to go, time to go! Visiting time up.'

“They going right through the [hospital's] ward; no way you can hide in those bathrooms — dem search right through and through,” the father said.

He then questioned how Ffrench managed to remain inside the hospital from 6:00 pm to 5:30 the next morning without being seen.

“On the ward you have two nurses, two security [guards]; she came downstairs or use the elevator, I don't know. Two security [guards] at the main gate, and receptionist at the side, and nobody saw her? And she came off the hospital grounds and nobody see her, that is unheard of,” he reasoned.

With her sentencing set for September, Hutton believes she should get eight to 10 years for stealing his child.

Under Section 69 of the Offences Against the Persons Act she could be liable to be imprisoned for a term not exceeding seven years, with or without hard labour.

The 27-year-old Ffrench, who is from Harker's Hall in St Catherine, was taken into custody on February 5 when she turned up at the Registrar General's Department in Twickenham Park, St Catherine, attempting to register a baby.

A subsequent DNA test confirmed on February 7 that the baby belonged to Hutton and his common-law wife Suzzett Whyte.

Prior to the matter being transferred to the Supreme Court on Tuesday, it was said in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court in April that Ffrench lurked at the hospital for almost a month before stealing the child.

According to court documents, Ffrench was first seen at the hospital by two witnesses on December 10, 2018.

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