THE COURT REPORT – Thursday, July 15th. 2021

The Case Of – Teenager Got Gun To Protect Family – Son told court he had gun for his personal protection after his Mothers house was shot up and sister 14 shot!

by Anita Nembhard-Flowers
Belize City, Thurs. July 15, 2021

A mother is heart broken and sad after leaving court today having to see her son go to jai. And while she is free with her other children, her 19 year old teenage son was send to jail for a gun he bought three weeks ago to protect his family after his younger sibling 14 was shot when his mother’s house was targeted and shot up.

It was a bitter sweet ending as the mother, 44-year-old, Marcia Martin of Hattieville exited the court free along with 3 of her children and having to weep for her 19-year old son, Devon Martin Jr., who was sentenced to 18 months each for a 19- mm pistol loaded with 11 live rounds of ammunitions in its magazine.

At 1 this afternoon, Marcia Martin, her son , 19-year old Devon Martin Jr., and 3 of her minor children, a boy, 17, two daughters 17 and 14, two of her daughter-in-laws, 20-year-old, Kimberly Solomon, and another daughter in law 17, a minor and her son-In-law 17, all who were inside sleeping at the time of a police search at their home for firearm and ammunitions at around 5:45 a.m., yesterday morning.

In court, the family was all unrepresented and Martin Jr., took the rap for the illegal gun and ammo- stating he purchased the gun, for self protection only, saying he never carried it outside, but had it after his little sister was shot.
The gun he said he bought three weeks ago.

But police did a search warrant at Devon Martin’s Jr., Mom’s house base on information that they received of a gun inside the home. And their source was right and because of that Marcia Martin and her entire family were dragged to court.

It was a very embarrassing circumstances for the family and they were also facing prison time as they could have all been remanded to prison if no one had taken responsibility for the found items.

After Martin Jr., took the rap for the gun and ammos prosecutor, Corporal Carlos Poot withdrew the charges from the others and they were free to go.

Police say that yesterday morning at around 5:45 p.m., officers of the Anti Drugs and Firearms Operations surrounded the Martin’s house when PC Rodriguez ran to the back of the house and saw a hand push out a window and a black bag was thrown out along with a gun which later followed the bag.

The items were picked up and inside the bag was a magazine for a gun carrying 11 rounds and a black 19- mm pistol.

As a result, the entire eight persons inside the house was detain and escorted to the Hattieville Police Station and later charged with kept firearm and ammunitions without being granted a gun license.

Devon Martin Jr., was sentenced to two- 18 months prison term but since the Chief Magistrate, Sharon Fraser order that the sentences run concurrently instead of consecutively, Martin will only have to spend 18 months, or a year and a half instead of three years.

The mandatory prison sentence for firearm or ammunitions is five years, but the Chief in using her own discretion imposed a lesser time on the teenager who picked up his first conviction today for a firearm related offense.

After he pleaded guilty, Martins’ mom, sisters and brothers and his in-laws all saw the charges withdraw from them and they were free to go.