Woman charged with malicious damage carried a knife into the Magistrates Court; discovery made when she was remanded

Security at the St. John’s Police Station and St. John’s Magistrates
Court allegedly was breached by a Jamaican woman, last week; and
this reportedly has prompted Chief Magistrate Joanne Walsh to
threaten to withhold her services if security is not beefed up at the

A source tells REAL News that, after she was remanded to His
Majesty’s Prison, the woman was found with a large knife. 
Early last week, the source recounts, the woman was taken into
custody and reportedly charged with malicious damage, then taken
before the chief magistrate last Wednesday. 

Reportedly, while the charge was being put to the accused, she was
acting in a strange manner and kept asking for the investigator.

Concerned about her behaviour, Walsh remanded the woman to
allow herself time to make inquiries about her mental health. 
It was while the woman was being processed and searched at the
prison that the brown-handled, silver-blade knife was found hidden
on her person.

It is alleged that the woman told prison officials she had the
knife in her possession all the time, even when picked up by the

According to the source, Walsh was immediately notified about the
situation. The chief magistrate was advised that she needs to ensure
that police officers search persons, especially prisoners, before they
enter the court.

There is concern that the woman could have used the knife she
carried to hurt someone, another source says, since, on the day she
appeared in court, there were only two officers assigned to Walsh’s

There was a male, who was calling up the cases, and a female who
stood guard of the prisoners.  Therefore, there was no officer to
conduct searches of persons entering. 

The source says that a senior officer who is attached to the court
went on vacation a month ago, and another senior officer followed
him; hence, no superior officer was in place at the court last week to
assign duties.

Meanwhile, after Walsh was notified of the breach, she allegedly
threatened not to go on the bench today, Monday, June 19.

Reportedly, she is demanding that a senior officer be put in place to
ensure that subordinate officers are assigned properly, and a full
complement of officers is in the court.

According to the source, a senior officer met with the chief
magistrate last week and promised that this would be done.
Reportedly, this is not the first time the Jamaican woman has been
charged with malicious damage. She had a similar charge laid
against her last year, according to reports.

At that point it was discovered that she was out of legal time in the
country, and the Jamaican Consulate was asked to have a ticket
purchased for her to return home. But nothing has been done, to
date, the source says.