DPP rules that accused St Thomas killer-cop be charged with murder

Jamaica Observer

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Acting Director of Public Prosecution Lisa Palmer-Hamilton, has ruled that Corporal Dwayne Smart, the police officer involved in the fatal shooting of Kayann Lamont, be criminally charged.

Lamont was killed on Saturday in Yallahs, St Thomas, during an altercation with the cop who attempted to arrest her for breaches of the Town and Communities Act. Lamont, who was eight months pregnant, was shot twice while her sister Novia Lamont, was shot and injured.

Another sister, Shemean Lamont, was allegedly assaulted by the cop.

Smart is to be charged with murder, illegal possession of a firearm wounding with intent and assault. 

In a letter to the Commissioner of the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) Terrence Williams, Hamilton-Palmer indicated she is of the opinion that given the high publicity that this incident has attracted and in the interest of justice for all parties involved, the matter would be best served by circumventing the preliminary enquiry process in the St Thomas Resident Magistrate's Court.

She stated her intention to exercise her discretion by preferring a voluntary bill of indictment, in order to facilitate the matter being brought straight to the Home Circuit Court, after Smart is arrested and charged.

The police report that several officers were on Foot Patrol in Yallahs when a woman who alighted from a minibus in the Yallahs Square was heard using indecent language. 

The officer approached her and advised her that he was going to arrest her. The officer accosted the woman and began to escort her to the Yallahs Police Station, at this time a struggle developed.

There was a break in the struggle at which time the officer drew his Glock service pistol and allegedly shot the deceased in the head. The officer allegedly then turned his weapon to Novia and shot her. The office finally turned his weapon at Shemean but did not fire.

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