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Crime

Another Tragedy for Texas, Truck load of migrants die from the heat after being trapped in a truck

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#Texas, USA, June 30, 2022 – At least 62 people, including children, crossed the US-Mexico border in a truck on Monday, probably hoping for a better life, and while they made it into the country 46 of them died before the truck’s doors could open and five more died at hospital.  Local media are describing it as the deadliest human smuggling case in modern US history.

US authorities say it was heatstroke and dehydration, the people were in what was supposed to be a refrigerated truck not unlike the ones used to ferry fresh food to supermarkets, only there was no working air conditioning in the truck and when firefighters arrived on the scene they say there was no sign of water either.

San Antonio Firefighters were called when one person stumbled out of the truck and collapsed by the road.  Fire Chief Charles Hood described in a press conference what they found when the doors opened.

“The San Antonio Fire Department responded to a report of a dead person and found the trailer — with a body outside and several that they could visibly see inside once the doors were open.  We’re not supposed to open up a truck and see stacks of bodies in there.  None of us come to work imagining that.” he lamented.

Temperatures in San Antonio where the truck was discovered were as high as 37 degrees (Celcius).  When temperatures reach between 32° and 40° heat cramps and a little heat exhaustion starts to appear, between 40° and 50° heat exhaustion is apparent once the temperature goes past 54° then deadly heat strokes are likely.  Temperatures in cars can rise exponentially on hot days, dwarfing the temperatures outside.

A study from  Arizona State University found that cars can reach 71° in summer.   A surface that hot will give human third degree burns.  The study found that cars can hit that mark in under an hour. This usually only refers to parked cars since moving vehicles either have the windows down or the air conditioning on.  The truck carrying the migrants had neither.

Miraculously 16 survived initially, four of them being children, unfortunately later the public would learn, five of the survivors passed away at hospital.

“The patients that we saw were hot to the touch, they were suffering from heatstroke and heat exhaustion, no sign of water either,” said Hood.

The nationalities of several of the dead have been confirmed to be Honduran, Mexican and Guatemalan.

Three people are said to be in custody.

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Crime

Male Charged with Robbery

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#TurksandCaicos, May 13, 2024 – Detectives of the Serious Crime Unit of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force have charged a man who allegedly stole a vehicle.

The accused, DANVANTE  BRISCO, 30,  of  Kew Town, Providenciales, was charged with:

  • One Count: Robbery
  • One Count: Taking Motor Vehicle Without Authority
  • One Count: Using Offensive Weapon to cause fear

Mr. BRISCO appeared in court today (May 13 ) and was granted bail of $7500.00 with one surety.

The matter was adjourned to July 05 for a Sufficiency Hearing.

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Crime

Dock Yard Male Charged  

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#TurksandCaicos, May 13, 2024 – A 20-year-old Dock Yard male appeared in court today (May 13th) charged with a series of firearm-related offences.

The accused, JAMES SIMON, was denied bail and remanded into custody pending a Sufficiency Hearing scheduled for July 05th, 2024.

Mr. SIMON faces the following charges: 

  • One Count: Robbery;
  • One Count: Gang Membership
  • One Count: Possession of a Firearm for the Benefit of a Gang
  • One Count: Possession of Ammunition for the Benefit of a Gang.

The charges against Mr. Simon followed investigations by officers of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force into a robbery at the parking lot of a Casino where three males robbed a victim.

Additionally, Mr. Simon is charged with the following offences, having been arrested on May 02nd, 2024, along South Dock Road.

  • One Count: Possession of a Firearm
  • One Count: Possession of Ammunition
  • One Count: Unlawful Entry

Officers also charged a teenage minor who was in the company of  Mr. Simon on May 02nd with One Count of UNLAWFUL ENTRY. 

The accused, seventeen and from Kew Town, Providenciales, pleaded guilty and will be sentenced on May 20th.

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Crime

Plea & Directions exposes Attorney Not Ready, Accused changes Plea and alleged fake gunman remanded to Prison

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Wilkie Arthur 

Freelance Court Correspondent

At the Plea and Direction Hearing (PDH) on Thursday 25th April, 2024, a number of matters from the list were adjourned to the next PDH on 31st May, 2024 and some to other dates for various reasons.

The first case called was that of GINO GERBEX. He is represented by Mrs Kimone Tennant. He pleaded not guilty to two charges of conspiracy to supply a firearm and ammunition along with JUMILLO ISMA and others unknown. The charges were read to him via video link from the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (DCR). 

It reads that GINO GERBEX acting together with JUMILLO ISMA and others conspired to supply a gun and ammunition on dates between 27th December 2022 to 25th June 2023. His remand was extended to his trial date to commence on 04th October 2024 for two weeks in the Grand Turk Supreme Court. 

Up next was the case of MELIUS PIERRE. 

No charges were read to him as his attorney, Mr.Astwood Forbes, was not yet ready to proceed due to the fact he was not able to speak to his client as yet to take instruction. He is in prison on remand. 

Presiding justice in all the criminal matters for Thursdays April 25 was Mr Justice Chris Selochan and Ms. Roseanne Richardson was for the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, who was present in court throughout. 

The court was not pleased that the accused had been coming to court repeatedly, and due to his attorney not seeing or speaking to him, the matter had to be adjourned to a later date once again. 

Deputy DPP Dr. Angela Brooks said she’s ready to proceed as she already attended court some five or more times in this matter and the matter has not progressed. 

The judge set a next PDH date for May 3, 2024.  

The accused has very serious immigration charges, such as returning to the Islands contrary to deportation order, aggravated assisting illegal entry and illegal entry.

Following was KADEN LIGHTBOURE, who pleaded not guilty for possession of imitation firearm with intent to cause fear. 

It is alleged that on 15th January this year, he used an imitation firearm to cause fear to other persons. This alleged incident was in North Backsalina, Grand Turk. 

Lightbourne is remanded until his trial commences on 20th June this year. 

His lawyer, the Hon. Mr. Willin Belliard indicated to the judge and prosecutor that he has filed a bail application for his client that is expected to be heard next week. 

Meanwhile, his remand continues.

JOHN SPENCER MISSICK has two lawyers, Mrs. Kimone Tennant represents him on an aggravated burglary involving a firearm (home invasion style) along with others as he acting together on 31st July, 2023 they did invade the occupants and stole a number of items such as:

  • Louis Vuitton bag value at $2000.00.
  • Gucci sunglasses value at $795.00.
  • Burberry sunglasses value at $395.00.
  • $700.00 in cash. 
  • A mini laptop value at $800.00.
  • Laptop case value at $20.00.
  • A Michael Kors wallet/bag value at $188.00.
  • $300.00 in cash 

Among other valuable items as well as identification cards, drivers licenses,etc, to a total value of nearly $6500.00.

SPENCER pleaded guilty with an explanation but was stopped immediately by Judge Selochan and his attorney because there’s really no such thing as ‘guilty with an explanation.’

Even though this is sometimes used at arraignment it is either you plead guilty or not guilty. T

he judge then questioned his attorney, Mrs Kimone Tennant, and she told the judge that was not in line with her instructions when she and Missick met and discussed this case. She invited the judge to allow her some more time to speak with Missick before this arraignment continues. 

The judge then granted the attorney’s request and advised that no other charges be put to him at this time. 

The case was then adjourned to the next plea and directions hearing on May 31st 2024. 

Missick’s second case was called, and his other lawyer, Ms. Sheena Mair asked for more time to speak with him as well, and it was granted. 

Both matters put to the same date, and his remand was extended to that date as well.

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