Witnesses give conflicting testimony as PM’s son begins defence in assault case

Samuel Hinds Jr yesterday began leading his defence in the alleged of assault of his fiancée’s sister but his two witnesses gave conflicting testimony.

Hinds, who is the son of Prime Minister Samuel Hinds, denies the allegation that he, on February 27, beat Tenza Lane with a cane, at 83 Duke Street Kingston, causing her actual bodily harm.

Lane, 18, had been charged with two counts of threatening behaviour and one count of assault causing actual bodily harm, against Hinds and her sister, Sonia Herbert, but she was found not guilty after a trial. Hinds, meanwhile, was called upon to lead a defence after the magistrate found that a prima facie case had been made out against him. Herbert, who is Hind’s fiancée and Lane’s sister, testified yesterday that Lane only had a small scratch on her face. She told the court that the mark Lane had on her back, on the day in question, was a wound inflicted by her (Herbert) two years prior, following a confrontation with Lane, who was accused of stealing her grandmother’s gold earrings.

On the other hand, Patricia Knight, the grandmother of Lane and Herbert, told the court that she noticed a “fresh,” scratch on Lane’s back, in addition to a small black and blue mark” on Lane’s face.

Herbert, who is a cadet officer, also stated that she discovered Lane in a bathroom inflicting wounds on herself, following a confrontation about missing money belonging to Hinds last December. She said she had found the money on Lane’s person. She also said that Lane was known to be violent and had a habit of stealing.

Under cross-examination, Herbert disagreed with Prosecutor Jomo Nichols’ assertion that she saw Hinds beating Lane on the day in question. She, however, agreed with him, when he stated that she, as an officer of the law, should have parted the scuffle between her 18-year-old sister and her 33-year-old fiancé. Herbert said she didn’t have to part the scuffle, since Lane got up and ran to the kitchen for a knife, a few seconds after she saw the scuffle.

Hinds is currently on $150,000 bail, after he consented to lodging his firearm and staying 200 yards away from Lane and all other witnesses in the matter, since April. Written submissions are expected to be presented by both the defence and the prosecution on June 11th.

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