Leswan Stewart, an 18-year-old unemployed secondary school dropout, will have to find $3,047 to pay former national Calypso Monarch Grantley ‘Ipa’ Constance for damaging his property.
Senior Magistrate Rickie Burnett ordered the compensation at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday after Stewart pleaded guilty to damaging the left rear window (glass) and tail gate of a Rav-4 Toyota Jeep belonging to Constance.
The glass and tail gate together valued $3,047.
If Stewart fails to compensate Constance, he will go to prison for four months.
Stewart, who is originally from Rose Bank, but resides at Edinboro, had at the time of the incident, told the Court he attended the Troumaca Secondary School but dropped out in Form 5. He did not write CSEC, but is currently attending evening classes.
Though the Senior Magistrate acknowledged that Stewart was not working, he insisted that Constance must be compensated.
“You can’t damage the man’s vehicle and just walk out the Court like that. It is a cost to him,” Burnett told the defendant.
When the Magistrate asked him what he was doing to earn a living, he replied, “Me ain’t working, but me does get little pocket change and ting,” evoking a chuckle from some persons in the audience.
“Mr. Constance now has to repair his vehicle, and wait on you for the money,” Burnett continued.
When the Magistrate asked Stewart whether he knew that Constance was a calypsonian, the youngster said that he heard about him.
In addition to having to pay compensation, Stewart was bonded for one year. In breach of the bond, he would have to pay the Court $1,000 forthwith or go to prison for three months.
In presenting the facts earlier, Prosecutor Curlene Samuel told the court that around 5am on November 9, Constance was at his home in Paul’s Avenue when he heard a hammering sound. Turning in the direction from which the sound originated, he saw the defendant with a piece of wood in his hand hitting the jeep which was parked in front his home.
Stewart, on realizing that he was seen, ran. Constance ran behind him but failed to catch him.
The matter was reported to the police and investigations led to Stewart’s arrest and subsequent charge.
Stewart told the Court that a man who was in the jeep made certain inappropriate remarks to him, and he got annoyed. He said the man told him the jeep was his, so he (Stewart) damaged the vehicle, as he could not get to the man.