East Canje man gets 12 years for killing mother

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A 38-year-old Adelphi Village, East Canje Berbice resident was on Wednesday sentenced to serve 12 years imprisonment for attacking his 77-year-old mother Jagranie Ramotar in 2019, which resulted in her death.

Totoram Lalta was sentenced by Justice Simome Ramlall at the Berbice High Court. Last month, Lalta was indicated for the capital offence of murder but opted to plead guilty to the lesser count of manslaughter.

Lalta had told the Police that he was consuming alcohol with a friend on October 19, 2019, and found his mother in the kitchen when he returned home.

He claimed that in a fit of rage, he slapped her multiple times, causing her to fall and hit her head. She was later taken to the hospital, where she remained unconscious until her death on November 14, 2019.

The post-mortem examination determined that her cause of death was a chronic subdural hematoma resulting from blunt trauma to the head.

Lalta gave a written caution statement on October 14, 2019, while being video-recorded, explaining his role in the offence, the court heard.

During his sentencing hearing on Wednesday, his sister gave an impact statement in court while begging for leniency for her brother.

“I forgive my brother…I know in his heart he didn’t mean to do it,” the woman said.

Lalta’s attorney, Surihya Sabsook pleaded with the court for leniency on the grounds that her client is remorseful for his actions and he can be rehabilitated.

Meanwhile, State Prosecutor, Muntaz Ali disclosed to the court that Lalta was in a habit of assaulting his mother and even had a previous conviction for attacking her.

“He was unprovoked at the time of the incident and acted recklessly to his mother,” Ali told the court as he urged the judge to consider the nature and gravity of the case.

Justice Morris-Ramlall, in her sentencing remarks, said that Lalta breached the trust imposed by his mother, who had “nurtured, protected and cared for him.”

“Parents expect and are entitled to be honoured and in the advanced stages of life, to be cared for. The offender breached that trust that was reposed in him and instead of showing love and gratitude, he was reckless and physically abusive towards his mother. This was a pattern and they were in fact numerous police reports of his abuse,” the Judge said.

Taking all the forgoing into consideration, the Judge sentenced Lalta to 12 years imprisonment with time served on remand deducted from the sentence.

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