Shortwood Teachers’ College Principal Sentenced, May Not Serve Time

St. Catherine, Jamaica (McN) – Shortwood Teachers’ College Principal Dr Christopher Clarke was sentenced on March 7, 2016, with the terms of $2 million fine or 12 months in jail.

On February 20 Christopher Clarke was convicted of causing death by dangerous driving, of the March 16, 2014 crash that caused the death of Yvonne Brown on the Old Harbour main road, St Catherine.

Brown was a passenger on the pillion of a motorcycle that collided with the motor vehicle Clarke was driving.

As per his sentencing, If the principal fails to pay the $2-million fine by the next two weeks, he begins serving time in behind bars.

Terms of his sentence also includes the suspension of his driver’s licence for 12 months.

St Catherine Circuit Court presiding Justice, Judge Vinnette Allen-Graham told the court that the evidence was overwhelming and that she took into account the character witness and the other two testified during the trial.

Clarke’s supporters clapped after hearing the sentence.

Daphne Clayton, his church sister gave God the credit for the non-custodial sentence, and remarked that many prayers were held for the camp superintendent; noting his participation with the children’s ministry at their church.

Defense attorney K.D. Knight in his 55-minute mitigation told the court, Clarke’s breathalyser test revealed that there was no sign of alcohol in his system at the time of the incident, and his client had lawfully changed lanes in overtaking.

Testimony For Dr Christopher Clarke Defense

Psychologist Dr Barrington Davidson, C E O of Family Life Ministries testified that days after the incident, Clarke, visited him for counselling.

Davidson states he has known Clarke with for over 13 years.

Davidson also testified that several tests were carried out to assess Clarke’s personality. The psychologist disclosed that Clarke suffered from anxiety disorder and severe depression.

The diagnoses resulted from the accident incident, which affected Clarke who, was distressed that he was involved in an accident which calmed someone’s life.

Psychologist Davidson, point out to the court that a custodial sentence would be a major loss to the society, due to Clarke’s contributions.

He suggested a that the court sentence Clarke to a very high fine and probation with community service.

Clarke, was visibly emotional during Davidson’s testimony.


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