Thursday, March 23, 2023
STATE Minister for Legal Affairs Jomo Campbell says inquests into police-involved killings have resumed following a lengthy delay.
Inquests were halted during the COVID- 19 pandemic but Mr Campbell said they finally resumed on March 6th.
His comment followed the latest US report on human rights in The Bahamas which revealed that 74 police-involved killings are awaiting inquests in the Coroner’s Court.
“We have resumed hearing of inquests since late 2021 and more particularly police shootings since March 2023,” Mr Campbell said. “We have an ambitious calendar to hear six (cases) between 27th March 2023 and (the) end of June 2023.”
“Additionally, we propose moving forward at the same pace save for the unavailability of counsel who may appear on behalf of interested parties. Delays are due largely in part due to counsel for the interested party. And counsel for family court calendar already being fixed with other matters at the Supreme Court.”
Mr Campbell noted that, for most lawyers, matters in the Supreme Court take precedence over Coroner’s Court matters, a factor that may contribute to delays.
“We actually started an outstanding matter and had to adjourn it abruptly due to a juror issue,” he said.
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