“Aaron Was In Charge”--DPP Argues; Court Denies Bail

BVI Platinum News | August 04, 2017 5:09 am MDT
Kalik Aaron
Photo Credit: BVI Platinum News
The Royal Virgin Islands Police Force is making headway in a lot of violent incidents that recently occurred around the Territory, thanks to the availability of CCTV surveillance cameras in key areas.

As a result of key footage currently in police possession, 20 year-old USVI native, Kalik Aaron, was brought before the Magistrate’s Court yesterday, August 3, on the charges of conspiracy to murder and attempted murder.

The charges against the accused, who resides in Havers Estate, Tortola, stem from an incident that occurred last year, October 29, 2016 in Road Town, when Dakeem Cheltenham, 22, received several shots to his upper body.

As outlined by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Kim Hollis QC, Aaron and others where caught on camera in the area on the night of the incident.

The incident occurred outside The Basement, a club in Road Town. The venue hosted a Halloween party the very night.

The DPP stated that based on the evidence, Aaron was in charge of what went down.

Delving into the details of the matter, DPP Hollis, referencing the surveillance footage, pointed out that a yellow truck arrived at the club and parked under the camera. Five men, including Aaron, allegedly then left the vehicle.

Aaron was noted to be the driver of the vehicle.

Sometime after, as the club began to close, the person later noted in the footage as the shooter, allegedly left the club, with Aaron and others not far behind.

The men where then seen outside congregating, until the accused and two of the men rushed back to the truck.

The crown noted that one remained on the outside and continued having a conversation with the shooter. The crown argued that it was at this time, the man was being told where to meet the truck after shooting.

The shooter was then left alone, as the other man made his way back to the truck, before it drove off in the vicinity of the Road Town Police Station.

Dakeem exited the club about 11 minutes after the men.

The DPP outlined that Dakeem left the club and crossed the road to urinate. Sometime shortly after, shots were fired, and a gunman was seen running in the direction of the High Court.

The crown highlight that this was an obvious mistake, as the truck drove back in the direction of UP's Cineplex, looking for the shooter.

The crown argued that it is apparent that the shooter is not a local, or someone who is familiar with the surroundings.

The shooter was then found in the vicinity of Scotia Bank, and was picked up. The vehicle then headed towards the western end of the island.

The court heard that the men thought the victim was dead, as he had suffered five gunshot wounds about his upper body.

It was disclosed that following the incident, Dakeem was rushed to St. Thomas for medical surgery. He is currently partially paralyzed.

Notably, on the night of the incident, officers recovered about 16 shell casings from a 9mm semi-automatic pistol.

Under police questioning, Aaron allegedly lied to officers about his whereabouts that evening.

“I certain I was not here,” he allegedly told officers, adding that he has not been to UP's in years.

After viewing the footage recovered, he then allegedly changed his story, and confessed that he was indeed in the area.

He also told the officer that the man identified to be the gunman, had approached him with a preposition to purchase his chain, adding that he was partying and drinking, and did not remember what happened.

A bail application made by Aaron’s Defense Lawyer, Daniel Stephens, was denied by Magistrate Vareen Vanterpool, who expressed her dissatisfaction with the accused not being at flight risk and his willingness to come to court.

Magistrate Vanterpool also stated that the nature of the offenses is not one she feels is a matter where bail should be granted.

He was remanded to prison and will return on October 6.
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