Criminal and Civil Suits dismissed against Two Cops Print E-mail
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Thursday, 02 August 2012 00:00

Jose Ortiz and Leonardo YamaOn Monday, July 30th, two police officers 46-year-old Sgt. Jose Ortiz, and 41-year-old PC Leonardo Yama, both of Belize City, appeared in Magistrate's Court to answer to charges of wounding.

Back in November 2011, they were accused of beating up Gabriel Casey, a bailiff at the Belize City Magistrate’s Court.

The case had been set for trial for quite some time but the men's attorney, Dickie Bradley had indicated to the court from April of this year that the officers have been negotiating with the virtual complainant to try and settle the matter out of court.

On Monday, both men appeared before Senior Magistrate, Sharon Frazer where they were told that the charge of wounding was struck out as Casey had requested no more court action in the matter. Casey, in a letter to the court, indicated that he no longer wants to proceed with the matter against the men as he has been compensated. The figure for compensation was not released but the men were told that they were freed from the charges. They were also told that the civil charges were also struck out.

Sergeant Jose Ortiz and PC Leonard Yama were accused of beating up Casey on September 16th, 2011.  During the incident, Casey ended up losing a tooth. The bailiff told police that he was attacked by the officers because he told them that it was a disgrace for them to be drinking in their uniforms.

According to the bailiff, he went to use the bathroom and that’s when the Sergeant confronted him and punched him in the face.  At that point PC Yama intervened and both allegedly began to beat him up which ended up with in him losing a tooth and sustaining an abrasion to the lip as a result.