Unlicensed cop gets bail for killing man in hit-and-run accident

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A 24-year-old Police Constable who fled the scene after a fatal accident was on Thursday slapped with a charge for causing death by dangerous driving.

Joel Simon appeared before Magistrate Rochelle Liverpool at the Sparendaam Magistrates’ Courts.

He denied the charge which stated that on May 8, 2021, at Better Hope Public Road, East Coast Demerara, he drove motor pickup #GPP 8699 in a manner dangerous to the public thereby causing the death of Navindra Ramnarine of Third Field Kaneville, Grove, East Bank Demerara.

Simon was also charged with the following traffic offences: being an unlicensed driver, breach of insurance, failure to stop after an accident, and failure to render assistance. He also pleaded not guilty to these charges. The defendant was released on a total of $400,000 bail. He returns to court on June 3.

Ashton Barker, the registered owner of the motor vehicle Simon was driving, was charged with permitting an unlicensed driver and breach of insurance. He pleaded guilty and was reprimanded and discharged.

Ramnarine, 50, a fisherman, of Diamond, East Bank Demerara (EBD), was killed while crossing the road at Better Hope. The accident occurred at around 20:00h. It was reported that Ramnarine was struck by what appeared to be a Toyota Tundra pick-up vehicle while it was overtaking another vehicle.

As a result of the collision, the now dead man was dragged approximately 100 feet from the initial point of impact. He was then run over by the vehicle which later sped off the scene. At the time of the man’s demise, he was reportedly visiting relatives in Better Hope.

A few days after the accident, Simon, who is attached to the Brickdam Police Station surrendered to the Police in the company of his lawyer claiming that he was the driver. However, this was only after the registered owner of the vehicle he was driving reported that the vehicle was involved in an accident.