Judge failed to properly direct jury — killer tells Appeals court

Posted by on Nov 18, 2010 in Local News & Alerts | 0 comments

A CONVICTED murderer could be let off the hook if the Court of Appeal agrees that his trial judge failed to properly direct the jury.

Andre Kirk Hypolite is serving a life sentence for plunging a knife into the back of Nicholas Dill following a drug-fueled sex party on Boxing Day 2004.

Andre Hypolite (center) is escorted to prison following his 2008 trial and conviction in the Supreme Court

His complaints about his conviction were presented to the Court of Appeal today, reports ZBM television news, with the three-judge panel expected to release their decision at a later time.

Hypolite attacked Mr. Dill with a large knife in the presence of his girlfriend Stacey Pike, who was also engaged in crack cocaine and ecstasy abuse. He was convicted by a jury in the Supreme Court in 2008.

The attack happened following Mr. Dill’s refusal of his demands for anal sex. Hypolite then chopped Ms. Pike before running away.

Lawyer Elizabeth Christopher charged that trial judge Charles-Etta Simmons ought to have told the jury to view Ms. Pike’s testimony for the Prosecution, with caution.

Caution because of her admission to using hard drugs that night and her prior conviction for manslaughter.

Plus, Ms. Christopher claimed that the judge failed to direct the jury that they had the option to convict Hypolite on the lesser offense of manslaughter if they believed he was not guilty due to his drug use.

In other words… jurors were left with the impression that they either convict him on murder or allow him to walk free.

The Appeal justices listened to a brief court audio recording of the judge’s remarks and were expected to read them via transcript.

Prosecutors Cindy Clarke and Maria Sofianos represented the Crown.

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