‘Hotskull’ gets life imprisonment for ‘cruel, brutal and callous’ murder of Better Hope pensioner


Sherwin Clarke, known as “Hot Skull”, was on Friday sentenced to life imprisonment for his role in the 2016 killing of 76-year-old David Ramkissoon.

Clarke, formerly of Prince Williams Street, Plaisance, East Coast Demerara (ECD), was sentenced by Justice Sandil Kissoon at the Demerara High Court.

Last month, Clarke was arraigned for the capital offence of murder but he later opted to plead guilty to the lesser count of manslaughter.

The 34-year-old man admitted that on August 21, 2016, he unlawfully killed Ramkissoon during the course of a robbery at his Better Hope, ECD home.

During Clarke’s sentencing hearing on Friday, the victim’s daughter-in-law, Nalini Ramkissoon, recalled finding her father-in-law’s lifeless body on that fateful day, an image she said she would never get out of her head.

“We live in fear every day. They have taken the joyful days from our home,” Ramkissoon said as she broke down in tears.

Sherwin Clarke, known as “Hot Skull”

Meanwhile, Clarke, in his address to the court said, “I’m asking the deceased family to please forgive me for my wrongdoing. I’m just asking for another chance to make it right.”

His attorney, Damien DaSilva, said that Clarke took the plea so the victim’s family can finally have closure.

According to DaSilva, his client is a model prisoner and can be rehabilitated and return back to society.

The Judge, while delivering his sentencing, remarks, said that “cruel, brutal and callous” best describes the murder of Ramkissoon and it raises an alarm to protect helpless members of society from similar circumstances.

Justice Kissoon said he also found no mitigating factor and pointed out that Clarke had three previous brushes with the law, including a three-year sentence for robbery.

After considering the inherence seriousness and gravity of the crime, Justice Kissoon sentenced Clarke to serve life imprisonment with the possibility of parole after serving 20 years.

According to the prosecution’s case, on the day in question, the victim was alone at home when Clarke, along with others, invaded the building and robbed him.

During the reported robbery, the elderly man’s throat was slit.

The matter was reported to the police after relatives returned from the creek and discovered his body.

Police had also arrested another man, Godfrey Gill called “Chucky”, in connection to the crime. In April 2022, Gill was sentenced to 11 years imprisonment after pleading guilty to manslaughter.

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