The King v Alec Ian Charles

JudgeInnocent, J.
Judgment Date11 March 2024
Judgment citation (vLex)[2024] ECSC J0311-2
CourtHigh Court (Grenada)
Docket NumberCASE NO. GDAHCR2021/0034
The King
Alec Ian Charles

CASE NO. GDAHCR2021/0034






Mr. Jordan Marshall, Crown Counsel for the Crown

Mr. Jerry Edwin of Counsel for the Defendant

Innocent, J.

The defendant was indicted on 21 st September 2021 on the charge of rape contrary to section 177(1) of the Criminal Code in relation to an incident which occurred on 9 th April 2016. On 5 th November 2021, the defendant was arraigned and he entered a plea of not guilty to the charge contained in the said indictment. On 9 th November 2021, the Crown filed an amended indictment. The amendment sought to correct a clerical error in the spelling of the Defendant's name. However, the record of proceedings does not reflect whether the Defendant was again arraigned on the amended indictment.


On 13 th February 2024, the matter was fixed for trial on 19 th February 2024. However, the trial did not proceed. On 19 th February 2024, on application made by Counsel for the Defendant, the Defendant was arraigned; and upon his arraignment the Defendant entered a plea of guilty to the charge of rape contained in the indictment. This plea was accepted by the Crown and the matter was set down for a sentencing hearing on 7 th March 2024. However, the sentencing hearing proceeded on 8 th March 2024 instead.


At the sentencing hearing the court heard the oral submissions of Counsel appearing for the Crown and Counsel appearing for the Defendant. The virtual complainant who was present at the hearing was invited by the court with the concurrence of Counsel to testify on oath and Counsel was given the option to put questions to the witness to which they declined.


The undisputed facts are as follows. On 9 th April 2016, the Defendant was present at a shop operated by the virtual complainant. At some point the virtual complainant went to sleep inside of the shop after all of the patrons had left except the Defendant. While the virtual complainant was asleep she felt someone on top of her and “something” in her vagina. According to the virtual complainant, she felt a burning sensation in her vaginal area. She pushed the individual off of her. She opened her eyes and realised that the shop was dark; which was not the same condition in which she left it before she fell asleep. She turned on the light and saw the Defendant attempting to pull up his pants. His penis appeared erect.


The Defendant spoke to the virtual complainant and promised to pay her. The Defendant then ran away. The virtual complainant raised an alarm and the Defendant was chased by one of the virtual complainant's cousins. The police were called. The police arrived and the virtual complainant attended at the police station to make a report. The virtual complainant was later examined at a medical facility. In an interview under caution conducted by the police, the Defendant cooperated fully with the police and admitted to the acts complained of.


By the Defendant's own admission, the Defendant said that he went and laid next to the virtual complainant. He attempted to wake her by shaking her but she did not wake up. He removed her pants and at that point she still had not awoke. He then went over and pushed his penis in her vagina. The virtual complainant woke and pushed him off of her and started raising an alarm. The Defendant got dressed and left the shop. The Defendant admitted that the virtual complainant did not give her consent to him having sexual intercourse with her. He also admitted that he did in fact offer the virtual complainant compensation for having sex with her; presumably to forestall any likelihood of her reporting the matter to the police.


The Defendant has been on bail from the day subsequent to his arrest and accordingly has spent no time on remand. He has no previous convictions for any or any similar offence.


The Defendant is now before the court for sentencing. The penalty prescribed for conviction on indictment for the said offence is a term of imprisonment not exceeding 30 years.


In sentencing the Defendant the court has adopted the following approach. The court will first determine a starting point sentence by assessing the seriousness of the offence having regard to the degree of harm or consequences attendant on the commission of the offence; and the Defendant's degree of culpability in the commission of the offence. This starting point sentence will be adjusted upward or downward within the prescribed range of sentences for the commission of this offence having regard to the aggravating and mitigating facts in the commission of the offence and in relation to the Defendant himself. The...

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