Court of Appeal will hear DPP’s appeal of Calaney Flowers’ murder acquittal in October session
BELIZE CITY, Mon. June 10, 2019– The Court of Appeal held a case management conference this afternoon for an appeal from the office of the Director of Public Prosecution, which is appealing the murder acquittal of Calaney Flowers, who was acquitted of the murder of her baby’s father — her ex-boyfriend Lyndon Morrison, 29.
At the end of the case management conference the panel of Appeal justices, which included the president of the Court of Appeal, Justice Manuel Sosa, and justices Samuel Awich and Minet Hafiz-Betram, gave instructions on the way forward in the case to the applicant and the respondent attorneys.
Flowers is being represented by attorney Anthony Sylvestre, while the DPP’s office is being represented by Senior Crown Counsel, Sheneiza Smith.
Both counsels in the case were instructed to prepare skeleton arguments which should be submitted and the court will hear the appeal in its October Session.
In August 2012, Morrison and his new girlfriend Sochyl Sosa were riding on Morrison’s Kawasaki Ninja motorcycle when they were hit from behind, allegedly by Flowers’ vehicle.
Morrison died as a result of the incident, but Sosa survived, and Flowers was arrested and charged with Morrison’s murder and the attempted murder of Sosa.
After being on remand for almost four years, Flowers finally had her day in court when she was tried in a trial without jury before the then Supreme Court justice, John Troadio Gonzalez. When the trial finally ended, Flowers waited another 9 months, before Justice Gonzalez rendered his not guilty of murder and not guilty of attempted murder verdict.
It did not take long for the office of the DPP to file an appeal of Flowers’ acquittal, but by the time the matter came up at the court, Flowers had already left the jurisdiction.
Flowers’ absence from the country resulted in a long delay of the appeal, but she returned to Belize about two weeks ago and was present in court this afternoon.
Following the hearing, Crown Counsel Smith told reporters that at the Supreme Court trial, the trial judge had found that Flowers caused the accident, but there was no specific intention to kill, “but the trial judge had failed to consider the alternative charge of manslaughter, the statutory alternative.”
Smith added their appeal is based on the fact that the judgment of the trial judge was unreasonable, in light of the acceptance of the prosecution’s evidence that the accused rammed the car into the deceased’s motorcycle, and therefore had the specific intention to kill.
Smith said that the judgment of the court was inconsistent with him (the judge) accepting the prosecution’s evidence and failing to consider the statutory alternative of manslaughter.
Smith said, “We have six weeks from today’s date to file and serve skeleton arguments, and the respondent has six weeks after receiving our arguments to file a response, and both sides have an additional ten days to reply, if necessary.”