11 months shaved off murderer's life sentence

ONE of two men convicted for the 2011 murder of male hairdresser Richard Morgan, in Torrington Park Kingston, has had his original sentence reduced by 11 months, following an appeal.

This on the basis of an "arithmetical error" on the part of the trial judge who had sentenced Richard Lindo to life imprisonment with the stipulation that he serve 20 years before being eligible for parole.

Lindo is now to serve a sentence of life imprisonment with the stipulation that he spends 19 years and one month before being eligible for parole.

The Appeal Court, in giving in writing the reasons for the decision which was handed down orally after the matter was heard on May 9 and 11 this year, said, "while the learned trial judge could not be faulted in her application of the sentencing principles, there was an arithmetical error as well as insufficient information before her".

As such, the Appeal Court said it affirmed the sentence of life imprisonment as well as the 30-year pre-parole period at which the trial judge arrived after taking into account aggravating circumstances, and also adopted the eight-year discount for the mitigating circumstances as identified by the learned trial judge. The Appeal Court, however, said on the basis of additional information provided by the Crown Counsel it discovered that Lindo's pre-sentence detention spanned two years and 11 months.

The Appeal Court judges pointed out that 22 years, less the period of pre-sentence detention, amounted to a pre-parole period of 19 years and one month.

The sentence is being treated as having commenced on February 15, 2017, the date on which it was handed down.

The prosecution, in the trial which began in 2016, said Lindo and his co-accused Shamar Salmon jointly murdered Morgan in August of 2011. According to the Crown, Morgan was attacked by both men when they took over an argument between Morgan and another individual who told Morgan that "all b****man fi die". Morgan was reportedly going under the building where Salmon and Lindo lived when Lindo told Morgan, "I don't want any b****man under the building."

Morgan, according to the Crown, replied to Lindo with an unsavoury comment about his mother. At that point Lindo and Salmon ran upstairs the building to the floor on which Lindo lived, and returned armed with a machete and a pickaxe stick, respectively. According to the evidence, Salmon chopped Morgan in the neck and, after Morgan fell on the ground, Lindo hit him with the pickaxe stick. The wound to the neck was fatal.

A release issued by the prosecution following the conviction said Morgan was a homosexual hairdresser and because of that he was discriminated against in the area. The office said Morgan was allegedly subjected to continuous abuse at the hands of the convicted men and other residents of the community.

The two were pronounced guilty after two weeks of trial before a judge and jury.

BY ALICIA DUNKLEY-WILLIS Senior staff reporter dunkleywillisa@jamaicaobserver.com

Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at https://bit.ly/epaper-login


  1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper; email addresses will not be published.
  2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.
  3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.
  4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.
  5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.
  6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.
  7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

Which long-term investment option is more attractive to you at the moment?