Teens remanded to prison after being found with weapons near YMCA area

The content originally appeared on: News Americas Now

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: Antigua News Room

POINTE XPRESS: Two teens, Jaheim Christopher of Golden Grove and Keniza Cochrane of Grays Farm, have been ordered to spend a week at His Majesty’s Prison.

The duo was remanded by Chief Magistrate Joanne Walsh on Monday after appearing in her courtroom.

The teens were caught with weapons near the YMCA Complex where children congregate in large numbers after school.

Neither Christopher, nor Cochrane, however could offer Chief Magistrate Walsh a reasonable explanation about why they had the weapons in their possession.

As a result, she ordered that both teenagers spend some time behind bars to get their “stories straight” before reappearing before her.

In his explanation, Cochrane, 19, told the court that he was going to cut his hair on Friday when he saw his 14-year-old cousin with a knife in his bag and took it from him.

Christopher, 19, said the cutlass taken from him by police was a tool used in his part time job in landscaping. He said he was waiting for Cochrane when they were spotted by the police.

They both denied having been at the YMCA.

Chief Magistrate Walsh was unconvinced by their stories and ordered that they be remanded to the prison until 15th February.

She said it was her hope that in the time they have to reflect before returning to court, they would both have more plausible stories to present to her.

Both Christopher and Cochrane were arrested last Friday after being searched and found with the weapons. They were accused of loitering around YMCA Sports Complex where an incident occurred that same afternoon.

A now viral video showed several youngsters in the YMCA brandishing various weapons. Police have not indicated whether Christopher and Cochrane were part of that group of weapon touting teens.

What has been confirmed is that on the day in question, at about 2:45pm, police officers attached to the Special Service Unit responded to an anonymous call about a group of boys walking into YMCA dressed in hoodies and brandishing sharp weapons. When police responded to the call, Christopher, who was spotted wearing a white hoodie and blue jeans, roused the officers’ suspicion.

An officer then approached Christopher who started to walk away. Christopher was ordered to stop, but instead of complying with the order, he began to run away. The officer rushed back to the response vehicle and gave chase to the teen who was apprehended near Antigua Public Utilities Authority on Independence Drive. Christopher was then searched by the police who found a machete in his waist.

He was then placed under arrest. The police then returned to YMCA where they saw Cochrane acting suspiciously.

He was detained near the Deluxe Cinema on High Street. Following a search of his person which revealed the knife, he too was placed under arrest.

Both teens were then transported to the St. John’s Police Station where they were charged with carrying offensive weapons with the intention to commit a felonious act.

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