After spending almost 13 years on remand for stabbing his neighbour to death after an argument, a Maraval man has been ordered to be released from prison.
Kareem “Grimey” Edwards, of Boissiere Village, Maraval, was initially charged with murdering Kurt Blaize but was allowed to plead guilty to the lesser offence of manslaughter after a plea agreement with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) was upheld by High Court Judge Hayden St Clair-Douglas, yesterday.
Edwards was charged with killing Kurt Blaize on October 3, 2009. According to the agreed facts in the case, Edwards was liming with Blaize and two other residents, identified only as Mustapha and Brittany, when Blaize started an argument over Brittany taking his hat. Mustapha reportedly grabbed a piece of wood and hit Blaize on his back.
Blaize left the group and went to his girlfriend’s home where he told her what transpired and threatened to kill Mustapha. Blaize got a cutlass and returned to confront the group.
However, he was greeted by Edwards, Mustapha and another man, identified as Trevor, who were armed with a knife and cutlasses.
The trio chased Blaize a short distance before Edwards stabbed him several times.
Blaize was able to walk a short distance before he succumbed to his wounds, which perforated both his lungs.
Edwards was detained weeks later and was initially released before being rearrested and charged with the crime.
Under the terms of the plea agreement, prosecutor Maria Lyons-Edwards and Edwards’ defence attorney Ulric Skerritt and Michelle Gonzales agreed that he should receive a sentence of between 10 to 15 years for manslaughter.
In deciding on the appropriate sentence, Justice St Clair-Douglas began with a starting point of 20 years.
He deducted two years based on the evidence of Blaize’s aggression which led to his death before applying a one-third discount for Edwards’ guilty plea.
Edwards was immediately discharged by Justice St Clair-Douglas as he noted that he had already served 10 months in excess of his 12-year sentence on remand.
Justice St Clair-Douglas advised Edwards to stay clear of confrontations in the future.
“Trouble is easy to find and you can find yourself in a situation as quick as that. Learn from your mistake,” he said.