Villa man tells court that he robbed victims to meet deadline to repay a debt

A Villa man who complained of stress was ordered to pay
compensation to his victims after stealing their valuables, including

Gerard Brookes was accused of stealing two knapsacks, belonging
to a tourist and a tour guide, from Runway Beach.
He is to pay $1,000 compensation to the visitor, Jared Deming, and
$500 to the local tour guide, Ayanna Richards. 

Brookes faced a six-month prison sentence if the monies were not
paid by mid-September. But this possibility was averted, a source
says, since his parents paid the money, in full, into the court on
Monday, June 19.

Reports say the two victims and other persons were on an excursion
at Runway Beach on June 14, and left their valuables on the tour bus,
with an employee of the tour company guarding them.

Allegedly, Brookes drove his car to the area, quickly went onto the
bus,  removed the knapsacks and drove away.

The incident was reported to the Police and, based on investigations,
a search warrant was executed at the Villa home of the 40-year-old
man, at about 12:50 p.m. on June 18.

Lawmen found an Anker battery charger, which was seized and
taken to the St. John’s Police Station for investigation purposes,
while Brookes was arrested on suspicion of larceny. 

Among the items he stole from Richards were several identification
and bank cards; a local driver’s license; an ALCATEL cellular phone
with the SIM and  a charger; and $820 in cash. 

The stolen items have a combined value of $1,980.
Meanwhile, from Deming, he stole a knapsack; an iPhone Pro Max
cell phone and phone case; two pairs of Reef sandals; two Oakley
sunglass cases; and the Anker portable phone charger
Those items were valued at $4 619.

Chief Magistrate Joanne Walsh ordered compensation because the
stolen items were returned to the victims – except for the cash that
Brookes had taken from their knapsack.

The accused had taken officers to the location where he had dumped
the victims’ belongings – in some bushes close to Abbott’s Farm.
The man explained to the court that he had been under pressure and
stressed out, because he had a deadline by which to pay some
money he owed.