Wed | Nov 29, 2023

Mom tells court son not capable of being a gangster

Published:Tuesday | June 28, 2022 | 12:09 AMTanesha Mundle/Staff Reporter

The mother of one of the alleged Clansman-One Don gangsters yesterday testified that she was devastated by the news of his arrest and that he is “not capable of being in a gang”.

The St Catherine woman described her son, Brian ‘Rooster’ Morris, as being very quiet and shy and “someone who is willing to work”.

“I raise my children to be law-abiding citizens, so I expected nothing less,” said the mother, who took the stand after Chief Justice Bryan Sykes permitted her son to reopen his case.

She further told the court that her son had never given her any reason to believe otherwise.

When asked by Morris’ attorney, Denise Hinson, if she knew why he was on trial, she replied: “From what I heard, he is part of a gang.”

She was then asked to describe how she had reacted to that news.

“I was devastated and even until now, I am,” she answered, adding that she did not believe that he has the ability to be a criminal.

“The child that I have, Brian, is not capable of being in a gang,” said the mother, who added that she has a very close relationship with her son.

The woman said that although Morris had left her home at age 22, they spoke almost daily and prior to his arrest, she would see him every week or every two weeks.

She told the prosecutor that she did not know of Morris answering to any other name than his birth name and do not know of him being called Rooster.

Morris is one of 28 remaining defendants, including reputed gang leader Andre ‘Blackman’ Bryan, in the trial. Initially, 33 accused were on trial on a now reduced 14-count indictment under the Criminal Justice (Suppression of Criminal Organizations) Act and the Firearms Act, but five were freed.

Brian, who had given unsworn testament, had said that the two prosecution witnesses, who are ex-members of the gang and had testified against him, were not being truthful.

He denied being a member of gang or taking part in any criminal activities.

“I never shot or kill anyone. Never been to Jones Avenue or Shelter Rock,” he had said. “I don’t have any don in my community and I don’t take orders from anyone.”

In the meantime, attorney-at-law Abina Morrison, who is representing defendant Kalifa Williams, had to postpone her case after the prosecution objected to the marshalling of evidence that was being elicited from a senior officer from the Horizon Adult Remand Centre.

The officer had appeared after the attorney had requested the prisoner admission records, which would indicate the period for which her client had been in custody.

Williams, during his unsworn statement, had testified that he had been in prison for almost all of 2017 and could not have been involved in some of the incidents in which the witnesses claimed he participated.

But shortly after the witness started testifying, the prosecutor objected on the grounds that the statutory standards had not been met and that the evidence would not be admissible.

Chief among the objection was that the witness was not the maker of the information nor was the creator identified.

Consequently, the matter was postponed for efforts to be made to have the correct person brought.

Three other lawyers had also requested records from Spanish Town Police Station, but the officers who took the records to court yesterday could not speak to them. Hence, the judge instructed the defence to have words with the police to have the matter sorted.

The trial resumes today in the Home Circuit Court.