Mason gets life for murder of British nurse

MONTEGO BAY, St James — Omar Reid, a 32-year-old mason, was yesterday sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole before 25 years, for the murder of Barbara Scott, a British nurse who was 61 years old at the time of her death.

Justice Paulette Williams who sentenced the mason, said she was struck by Reid’s utter lack of remorse for the crime to which he pleaded not guilty, but for which he was found guilty by a 12-member jury after a one-day trial on Tuesday.

“You and the deceased were friends… she goes missing from March 12 and you do nothing to help. The jury believed that you hit her so hard in the head it fractured her skull, threw her into the pit like garbage and disappeared for weeks, that is what I have to sentence you for,” the judge said.

Reid’s attorney Kenneth McLeod, who asked the court to exercise the utmost leniency in passing sentence, said he will be appealing the matter as the evidence which did not support a murder conviction.

According to the evidence presented by Attorney Hugh Thompson, who prosecuted Reid on a fiat from the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and attorneys Dirk Harrison and Paula Archer-Hall, Reid told the police that he hit Scott in her head during the course of a fight.

However, Reid, the father of a five-year-old son, denied this.

Scott’s body was fished from a sewerage pit at her home in Somerton, St James, following a seven-day search.

According to Reid’s antecedent report which was read in court, he grew up with his grand and great-grandmother in Somerton, St James after his mother, now deceased, left him to purse work as a domestic helper in Kingston.

His father, a New York plumber with whom his mother shared a visiting relationship, played a negligible role in his life, the report said.

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