Driveway shooting: Businessman admits to killing man, attempted murder of girlfriend
Robert Benn, the contractor who fatally shot a man and wounded his companion as they tried to turn their vehicle on his driveway in Tucville in 2016, on Tuesday pleaded guilty to attempted murder the lesser count of manslaughter.
Benn, 42, who resided at Perry Street, Tucville, Georgetown, appeared before Justice Navindra Singh at the Demerara High Court where he admitted to killing 25-year-old Collin Perreira and the wounding of Perreira’s girlfriend, 20-year-old Galeann Chacon on August 23, 2016.
The judge sentenced Benn to serve six and a half years imprisonment for manslaughter and four years for the attempted murder charge. Justice Singh ordered that the sentencing run concurrently and for the prison authorities to deduct from his sentence the time spent on remand.
Benn was represented by attorney-at-law Dexter Todd, while the state was represented by prosecutor, Tyra Bakker. On the day in question, Perreira was driving his car with his girlfriend in the front passenger seat; he attempted to turn the car onto Benn’s driveway, when Benn, who was in his yard, drew his handgun and discharged several rounds at the vehicle.
Both victims received injuries and Perreira was pronounced dead on arrival at the Georgetown Public Hospital. Todd, in his plea of mitigation, told the judge that at the time of the shooting, his client was living in fear since persons had threatened to attack, rob and kill him.
Todd told the court that his client felt threatened when he saw the car turning on his bridge since he believed they were bandits and, so he shot at it.
The attorney further told the court that his client is remorseful and has since tried various ways to make amends. According to Todd, his client has donated computers to the prison and aided prison authorities into developing various rehabilitation courses for inmates.
Meanwhile, in court, Perreira’s mother took the witness stand and explained that her son was murdered without justification. The distraught woman said she received numerous pleas from Benn to meet and so in 2018, she visited him in prison.
She explained that Benn showed no remorse and wrote her a letter justifying what he did instead of apologising for his actions.
The family was also offered $4M, but the grieving mother said that after she did not take the money, Benn began to call her daily on the cellphone to persuade her to take it.
“My son was brutally killed without a warning or cause,” the woman told the court.