Authorities conducting the investigation into the shooting at a home on Pendant Cactus Drive in Sucker Garden on March 9, 2020. (File photo)
PHILIPSBURG–A sixteen-year-old resident of Sucker Garden will have to stand trial on murder and manslaughter charges, it emerged Wednesday during a pro-forma hearing in the Court of First Instance.
The juvenile, who is currently detained at Miss Lalie Youth Care and Rehabilitation Centre, is charged with involvement in the March 9 shooting incident at a home on Pendant Cactus Drive in Sucker Garden.
In the shooting a man was killed and a woman critically injured. The man was shot four times – once in the jaw, once in the chest and twice in the shoulder, the police said at the time. The woman was shot in the head and the hip.
Both were rushed to St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC), where they were given emergency medical care. The man succumbed to his injuries and died at SMMC about an hour after the shooting incident. The woman was flown to Colombia for further medical treatment and survived.
Shortly after the shooting, the teenage boy turned himself in at the Philipsburg police station. He told officers he was involved in the shooting that had taken place in Sucker Garden. He was arrested and handed over to the Detective Department for questioning.
The young defendant said during Wednesday’s preliminary hearing that he “did not recognise” himself in the allegations, which include illegal firearm possession.
The Prosecutor said the case file was complete, except for a report about a tapped phone call. Also, a psychological report is still missing.
The suspect’s lawyer Shaira Bommel said she was not yet in a position to file for requests or to call for witnesses, as she does not yet know the contents of the file and has not yet been able to discuss the allegations with her client.
Parties agreed that the lawyer would inform the Court and the Prosecutor’s Office about any requests within three weeks.
Holding a portrait of her deceased son in front of her, the victim’s mother made a brief statement to the Court. “He is gone. He is not coming back. For what, I do not know. Why did he shoot my son? I do not know. It is very hard. It is painful. All I need is justification for my son. He shot two persons and one is dead,” the mother said in her emotional declaration.
No trial date has been set, but a hearing is expected to take place within four months.