Wed | Dec 7, 2016

Justice delayed

Published:Saturday | March 14, 2015 | 12:00 AMLauntia Cuff
PHOTO BY LAUNTIA CUFF Vinston Miller looks over some of the documents relating to his son's case.

SANTA CRUZ, St Elizabeth:

LENGTHY DELAYS in dealing with matters before the Jamaican courts often make the pursuit of justice a frustrating journey for many; and frustration is what Vinston Miller feels after he has been waiting for more than two years for the Supreme Court to hand down judgment on a suit he brought before the court.

Miller's dilemma began in 2007 when his son, Weston, was killed in an accident caused by a truck driver.

He said his son, who was 26 years old and a carpenter at the time, was on his way home from work when the accident happened.

"Truck run over my son car down at Rocky Hill road first day of February 2007. [He was] coming from work and the truck run in [his] car straight on the other side of the road.

"Me and him live together, so the evening him call me and say him want soup, that was about 5 o'clock [he was] coming from work. Him a man love him fish soup and by 10 after six mi get the news.

"I was [on] the farm doing some work, and I withdraw from the farm to get a cup of tea and I get the phone call. When I reach, vehicle blocked the whole place from Rock Hill straight to here (Santa Cruz). I run down to Rocky Hill there when I see. I [couldn't] believe the truck [was] on top of my son's car. They had to cut the car in two to take out my son," Miller told Rural Xpress.

This incident happened at an already difficult time for Miller as, months before, he buried another of his sons and also buried his wife about two weeks before the accident.

"I just buried my wife two weeks before that. I bury my wife the 18th of January, 2007 and, by the first of February, accident again.

"I lose a son the July [before] by asthma. My wife take it too hard and she end up in the Black River Hospital for five weeks and they transferred her from Black River to Mandeville for another seven weeks; doctor said is stress. She died the second of January," Miller explained.

He said, after a number of court appearances, the driver pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving in the St Elizabeth Circuit Court, and that a suit was filed in the Supreme Court some time in 2008.

The claim was filed by Miller on behalf of three dependents of his son, his nephews and niece, who he had supported. Miller says the children have been in need of assistance since his son's death.

"It go Black River Circuit Court and it was there 'til it over and it transferred to the Supreme Court from 2008. I would like it to be finished now," Miller said.

Miller said, in 2012, the judge who presided over the case told him that a judgment would soon be handed down. More than two years later, he is yet to receive any word. Miller said that, whatever the decision is, he just wants the matter to be disposed of.

"The last [court date] was the 13th of June, 2012," he said.

His lawyer has since written to the registrar at the Supreme Court, without any response.

rural@gleanerjm.com