54-year old Police Constable, Walter Spike, this afternoon pleaded guilty to manslaughter in connection with the 2003 shooting death of a child in Majesty Gardens, St. Andrew.
Spike had been on a murder charge in relation to the killing of 9-year old Renee Lyons. Allegations are Constable Spike was on duty and began to chase a man.
A bullet discharged from Spike’s gun while he chased the man and killed the 9-year old child. The child’s killing had led to protests by residents.
Spike fled the island shortly after the incident. He had applied for asylum in the United States out of an alleged fear of being killed by people angry at the killing of the child.
However, Constable Spike was deported to Jamaica in 2011 after his asylum efforts failed. A jury was empanelled to hear the case today.
Constable Spike elected to plead guilty to manslaughter. Spike was represented by attorney-at-law, Peter Champagnie.
When contacted this afternoon, Mr. Champagnie conceded that his client had stood a reasonable chance of being acquitted.
However, the Attorney says he was instructed not to contest the case by Constable Spike.
Spike reportedly indicated to the Court that he could not, in all good conscience, contest the criminal charge because of the religious beliefs which he now holds.
Constable Spike is to be sentenced on June 8 this year. His guilty plea represents a rare case of a Policeman in Jamaica pleading guilty to a criminal charge in connection with the fatal shooting of a civilian.