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Home » Crime » Kareem Musa Weighs in on Charge Against Cpl. Kent Martinez
Aug 6, 2019

Kareem Musa Weighs in on Charge Against Cpl. Kent Martinez

Kareem Musa

Attorney Kareem Musa, who represents the family of Allyson Major Junior, was away in China last week when Corporal Kent Martinez was arraigned on a single charge of Manslaughter by Negligence.  Martinez is the officer who allegedly shot and killed Major during a vehicular pursuit on July sixteenth which ended on Regent Street West near the foot of the Swing Bridge.  Like many Belizeans, Musa shares the disappointment of the inconsequential charge that has been brought against the police officer.  According to Musa, notwithstanding a settlement for compensation, taxpayers will have to shoulder the financial cost of a civil suit and chances are that the officer will return to active duty and still be eligible to collect his full salary once he returns from interdiction.

 

Kareem Musa, Attorney for Major Family

“My initial reaction is the same as it was for the family and as it was for many Belizeans, it was one of shock, complete shock, and as an officer of the court I could see why people have a very poor perception of the justice system in our country.  It is a very sad reflection of the reality that we are living in because if you just think about it for a second, if this was four other young black boys from the south side of Belize City chasing somebody and shooting at them and the person died, all four of those individuals would have been charged for murder.  But the fact of the matter is that this was somebody wearing a uniform and so it appears that the police department is bending over backwards and it’s unfortunate that I must say that.  But the fact of the matter is that in my mind, I was prepared mentally for a charge of manslaughter.  At the worst case scenario, worst case scenario, because it is clear to be seen where a charge of murder could have been made out.  To have your weapon drawn, to raise that weapon, to then pull that trigger and to have a bullet go through the back glass where your head is, a very good case could have been made out for murder.  So that’s what all the evidence was leading to. This is such a blatant act of abuse of power, of excessive force, of unjustified force being used that I see a very substantial award coming and, like you said, it’s unfortunate that taxpayers will have to pay for the act of this officer.  Now it then comes down to taxpayers, are we just going to sit by and allow our tax dollars to be spent like this?  I think it is actually time for us to realize exactly what you are saying to me right now, that at the end of the day, if we don’t mount an action, the Belizean people don’t get up and condemn these acts and don’t take a stand against these acts then they will continue to happen.”


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