Prosecution demands 8 years for parking lot shooting

POSTED: 11/17/11 4:09 AM

St. Maarten – Prosecutor mr. D.M. Benammar demanded an 8-year prison sentence against 21-year-old Martinois Angelo G. for an attempt on the life of a woman who drove off from Le Grand Marché parking lot on February 16 with a car he thought was his. The woman was hit in the hip by a bullet he fired at her, before forcing the victim out of the car and driving away.
G. is also charged with threatening J.S. Joe, less than a week later on February 22. He threatened the victim with a firearm, telling him, “I will blow your head clean off.” The third charge is for gun possession.
Prosecutor Benammar asked the court for the immediate arrest of the defendant, who came to the court as a free man. He was arrested on March 22, and released from custody on August 3. That immediate arrest did not happen, because Judge mr. M. Keppels will pronounce her verdict on December 7.
The defendant’s attorney, mr. Maria Hoeve, asked the court for a 9-month sentence reduction as compensation for procedural mistakes that were made while G. was in custody; she asked an additional reduction for time he’d spent too long in a police cell.
Apparently, the defendant swapped a car he bought for another car without bothering about formalities and without checking his new car’s ownership. When its real owner discovered the vehicle on the supermarket’s parking lot, she got in and wanted to drive away. In an attempt to stop her, G. fired a shot at the vehicle and hit the woman in her hip.
mr. Hoeve pleaded self defense because her clients was “defending a good he thought to be his.”
Prosecutor Benammar said that self-defense requires a proportionate reaction and that shooting at somebody who is stealing your car does not qualify.
“There were other options than shooting; for instance, going to the police,” she said.
“The defendant is in no way entitled to self defense.”

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