Inmates admit assaulting prison officer at Westgate – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

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Inmates admit assaulting prison officer at Westgate




Two prison inmates admitted an assault on a prison officer more than two years ago.

Mikiel Thomas, 22, pleaded guilty in Magistrates’ Court yesterday to an assault on David Lawes that caused him bodily harm.

His co-accused, Josef Smith, 32, admitted a charge of common assault.

The court heard that Mr Lawes, an officer at Westgate prison near Dockyard, was taking the two men to their cells when Thomas pushed past him and headed towards the dining hall.

Mr Lawes tried to bring the inmate back, but Thomas hit him in the face with a metal tray and a fight broke out.

Smith joined in and pushed Mr Lawes in the chest.

The fight was brought under control and the two inmates were returned to their cells.

Mr Lawes suffered a cut to his lip in the incident and the pair were charged with assault and causing bodily harm.

The incident took place on July 18, 2018, but the pair did not appear in court until August 21 this year.

Carrington Mahoney, for the Crown, told the court that the police report did not arrive at the Department of Public Prosecutions until July.

The two men at first pleaded not guilty to the offences, but switched their pleas to guilty yesterday.

Thomas was sentenced to 12 years behind bars in 2017 for manslaughter and Smith was sentenced to 14 years for aggravated burglary and the discharge of a firearm in 2014.

Charles Richardson, who represented Thomas, said that his client had already had his privileges revoked for six months by Westgate.

He highlighted that the restriction meant his client had already been punished.

Mr Richardson and Marc Daniels, who represented Smith, said the two should be given prison sentences that ran concurrently with the terms they were already serving.

Magistrate Khamisi Tokunbo sentenced Thomas to eight months imprisonment and Smith to three months imprisonment, but said they should run concurrently.

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