Wed | Nov 21, 2018

Prosecutors discontinue murder case against spouse of deadly momster

Published:Thursday | June 21, 2018 | 12:00 AMLivern Barrett/Senior Gleaner Writer
Martin Swaby

The common-law spouse of the Clarendon woman who received a suspended sentence for using a piece of board to beat her two-year-old daughter to death because the child defecated on herself has been freed of murder.

Dingwall Green was acquitted in the Clarendon Circuit Court on Tuesday after prosecutors announced that they were offering no evidence against him. Green and his female companion, Delrita Smith, 53, were charged with the gruesome beating death of two-year-old Sherene Smith in Clarendon in 2006.

A post-mortem report revealed that Sherene had blood in both kidneys and lacerations to the posterior wall of the small intestine. "Cause of death: hypovolemic shock due to rupture to intestines and blunt trauma to kidneys," the report concluded.

The case was stuck in the parish court in Clarendon for 11 years before it was sent to the Clarendon Circuit Court last October. Smith pleaded guilty to manslaughter in January and was sentenced last Friday to three years in prison at hard labour.

However, Justice Courtney Daye ordered that the sentence be suspended for two years, meaning that Smith will avoid prison if she does not commit a criminal offence over the next 24 months.

Prosecutors Andrea Martin Swaby and Syleen O'Gilvie acknowledged that among the evidence they intended to use in Green's murder trial was a statement from one of Smith's children who accused Green of beating Sherene the day she died.

However, Martin Swaby, a deputy director of public prosecutions, indicated that the case file also included separate statements from one of Green's children and an adult female who was present and they both accused Smith of beating the child.

"Based on the evidentiary materials that were gathered in the case, the crown was presented with two diametrically opposed versions of events," she said.

"Miss Smith, having accepted responsibility for the death of young Sherene Smith, it would not be in the interest of justice to pursue a prosecution against Mr Dingwall Green," added Martin Swaby. She indicated, too, that his offspring who gave the statement to investigators pointing the finger at Smith was the only witness who attended court to give evidence.

"In light of this fact, coupled with the fact that Delrita Smith took responsibility for the death of the child, the Crown offered no evidence against Mr Dingwall Green," Martin Swaby explained.

livern.barrett@gleanerjm.com