Bermuda’s youngest murderer imprisoned indefinitely
Teenager Rashaun Codrington has been imprisoned “at the court's pleasure” for the murder of 18-year-old Malcolm Outerbridge.
Codrington must spend a minimum of seven years in jail before he is eligible to request parole — in what is otherwise effectively an indefinite sentence.
Described yesterday by prosecutor Carrington Mahoney as “the youngest convicted murderer in the history of Bermuda”, Codrington was 15 years old and legally a child when he stabbed his 18-year-old friend to death on October 28, 2011.
Following the attack on the Railway Trail near his Bulkhead Drive residence, Codrington dragged his dying victim into nearby bushes — and the Supreme Court heard that an unknown person helped him try to conceal the crime.
“Malcolm Outerbridge was an exceptional young man, and a friend of yours,” Puisne Judge Stephen Hellman told him before sentencing.
“You murdered Malcolm Outerbridge, and here you are — what a wicked, stupid and senseless act.”
Noting the “ferocity of the assault”, Mr Justice Hellman said the victim had been stabbed 27 times, three of which were mortal injuries.
“After stabbing him, you changed your clothes and used a garbage bag to clear away blood articles of clothing,” he added.
“I am satisfied that at least one other person helped you to do it.”
The victim's mother Kaywell Outerbridge read out a statement in court, part of which read: “It is a parent's worst nightmare to hear their child has been killed.”
She spoke of her grief knowing her son would never have grandchildren and carry on the family name, as well as his transformation while travelling in Borneo and Malaysia with Raleigh International in the summer before his death.
Recalling how her son became a staunch advocate for Raleigh, and a mentor to others, she added: “Who would have thought that my 18-year-old son would have had such an impact on so many?”
She finished: “Love triumphs over hatred.”
Father Malcolm H. Outerbridge called the murder “a vicious killing of a young man who had his life ahead of him”.
And sister Malcishia Outerbridge, 22, wrote of her horror at learning via Facebook of the murder just hours after the attack.
“I know my brother liked to play pranks,” she said. “But when I messaged his phone and the message wasn't delivered, my whole world turned upside down in a second.”
Codrington has never given an account in court of what motivated the attack.
Lawyer Charles Richardson pointed to expressions of remorse in a recent social inquiry report, in which his client said: “It hurts me too much to know I did this. Malcolm was a good friend of mine, and I think about his family a lot.”
From the dock, Codrington rose to address the Outerbridge family, saying he was sorry for the pain he'd caused them.
“If I could change what happened that day, I would,” he added, prompting the victim's father to rise and demand why he'd murdered his son.
There was no reply, and Mr Justice Hellman called for order in the court.
Outside the courtroom, Mr Outerbridge said he wasn't satisfied with the terms meted out.
Seven years, he said, was “too soon” for Codrington to be considered for parole.
He added: “I just want to know why. It's still in my mind. Every day I wake up with it. Malcolm was my only son.”
Mrs Outerbridge said the Island needed to revise its laws when it came to juveniles.
“I'm glad a sentence has been placed, although I am not happy with the terms. There's not much I can do because it comes under a strange law,” she said.
“We need to look at the way other jurisdictions do this. It's going to get scary if we don't make it tougher.”
She said Codrington should serve a minimum of 12 years before parole.
“I want him to really think about it. He admitted Malcolm was his friend — how could you do a thing like that?”
Mrs Outerbridge added: “There will never be closure. But I can take what Malcolm meant to Bermuda, and move on with that.”