The Chief High Court Judge in Grenada has issued an appeal to the Grenadian community beseeching them to stand on the side of the nation’s women and young girls who become victims of sexual abuse.
Addressing the Number Two Supreme Court during a sentencing hearing on Monday, Chief Judge Paula Gilford said that far to often victims of rape coming before the court are made to feel as villains rather than being treated as the victim they have become.
Her seemingly well orchestrated message was delivered moments before a forty-three year man was handed a nineteen year jail sentence on charges of indecent assault and incest, an act which was carried out on his thirteen year-old daughter.
During the three-hour sentencing hearing, two character witnesses were called to the witness stand. Their mission was basically to showcase the positive aspects of the accused man’s life, highlight his previous good character and the negative impact of having him sent to prison.
In this case both witnesses, were straight to the point dubbing the accused man Earnest Campbell as an honest, hard working and well respected man in the community. Both individuals begged the court for leniency, citing imprisonment could permanently affect the functionality of the immediate and extended family.
Judge Gilford on the other hand, had a different prospective on the situation. In-fact she viewed Monday’s display at the sentencing hearing as an exercise aimed at playing down the traumatic impact of an incident of sexual abuse; in this case the thirteen year-old young lady assaulted by her own father.
The court heard that Earnest Campbell in all the proceedings showed no remorse; in-fact it was said he claimed that he was merely trying to help his daughter satisfy her sexual urges by masturbation rather than going to guys.
The judge noted that she finds it rather appalling, that a father, who claims to be caring would embark on an act to show his thirteen year-old how to have sex with herself rather than attempting to prevent such from happening.
The court also heard that following the incident, the young lady claimed she felt dirty, attempted suicide, found it difficult to concentrate in school and had a hard time sleeping, eating and coping with friendship particularly with boys remembering what was done to her by someone she had trusted, her dad.
Judge Gilford noted that since the start of the year 2017 she has had to deal with far too many sex related offenses, especially for a small state like Grenada. It is on this basis the judge called on the Grenadian community to stand up against the unprecedented rise in sex offenses in Grenada. According to her it seems that the society has adopted a no respect policy to the nation’s women and in particular the young ones.
The nation, the judge said, must seek to protect its women and young girls since according to her it is difficult to identify who are the offenders by just looking at an individual.