Man who killed ex-lover asks Appeal Court to set aside 60-year jail sentence

0

Allan Sim, 60, who was sentenced to 60 years’ imprisonment for the November 2015 murder of his ex-lover, Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH) Ambulance Dispatcher, Melissa Skeete, has moved to the Court of Appeal where he is challenging his conviction and sentence.

On October 15, 2020, Sim was found guilty of the crime by a jury following a trial before High Court Judge Navindra Singh at the Demerara High Court.

In a Notice of Appeal filed on October 21, 2020, at the Court of Appeal in Kingston, Sim, through his lawyer, Adrian Thompson, said that he is dissatisfied with the decision of the jury and is asking that the sentence of Trial Judge Navindra Singh be reversed, varied and set aside. He has so far proffered three grounds and indicated that further or additional grounds will be added with leave of the court.

Sim contended that the Trial Judge admitted evidence that was prejudicial to a fair trial. He further contended that the decision of the jury was against the weight of the evidence. He complained that his sentence is unduly severe.

Based on reports, on the day in question, Sim picked up the mother of four, with whom he shared a child, from her place of work in his motor car, PRR 6801, but sometime after, she was discovered near Carmichael Street, Georgetown, lying facedown and bleeding profusely from several stab wounds. The woman died while receiving treatment at the GPHC.

Three months after Sim was charged with the murder of Skeete, his son, Allan Sim Jr, was charged with being an accessory to the crime. According to the charge against the younger Sim, between November 23 and 25, 2015, at Georgetown, he received, comforted, maintained and relieved his father after his father had murdered Skeete. The younger Sim was not required to plead to the indictable charge.

He is currently awaiting trial for the offence at the High Court in Demerara.

During the senior Allan Sim’s trial, Police Inspectors Salesh Roopnarine and Suraj Singh told the jury that they interviewed Sim in relation to the murder of Skeete, during which he told them a story.

According to the Inspectors, Sim told them that he and Skeete shared a relationship that resulted in a child being born. He further told the detectives that one day, he went to the woman’s house at Lot 94 Prince William Street, Plaisance, East Coast Demerara, and, to his surprise, she ran into the house.

Sim told the police witness that he hit one of the windows and broke the glass. He said that when he peeped into the house, he saw a man from Paradise, East Coast Demerara. The police ranks testified that Sim related to them that he asked Skeete, “how she cud do that” when he had already paid her rent and bought her a pump.

Sim further related to detectives that on November 23, 2015, he went to Skeete’s workplace, the GPH, and picked her up in his motor car; and as they were driving through Carmichael Street, Georgetown, an argument erupted.

According to Inspectors Roopnarine and Singh, Sim said that Skeete pulled out a surgical blade and attempted to stab him, but he took away same from her and stabbed her instead. He further related to them that the woman ran out of the car while bleeding, and he drove away and hid the vehicle.

They said that Sim told them, “Me never expect this thing to go down suh.” Inspector Roopnarine testified that he made an entry regarding what Sim told him, but Sim refused to sign same, based on advice from his lawyer.

Skeete’s teen son testified that during the month of November 2015, he lived at the aforementioned address with his mother and siblings. According to the teenager, Sim was his mother’s boyfriend. He testified that at the time of his mother’s death, she was living at the aforesaid address with her other boyfriend, Junior [only name given].

Asked by the prosecutor when was the last time he had seen Sim, the teenager stated that he had last seen him the night he broke the window of his mother’s home. Reflecting on that night, the teen testified that he was in his bed when he “heard a glass break.”

The young man added that he thought it was the glass table, but he next saw Sim at the window cursing his mother. He added that his mother and Sim were “cussing out” while her next boyfriend was at home. After the “cussing out”, the teen stated, Sim went downstairs and said that if he could not get to kill his mother he would come for her children, before driving away. He noted that at the time of the incident, his other siblings were at home.