St Vincent native Devye Nicholson told the court that her former landlord — who she claims is ‘well-connected’ in the territory — threatened to cause her to lose her employment and subsequently deported over a tussle.
This tussle resulted in Nicholson being charged with common assault and threatening language.
Her matter went to a trial after she pleaded not guilty to the offences which allegedly occurred on July 28, 2018.
Closed of Crown’s case
On Tuesday, the Crown wrapped up its case against Nicholson when it called its final witness — the investigating officer, Phillip Matthias.
He testified that he was stationed at the Road Town Police Station on the day in question when he was made aware of a report of an assault in Baughers Bay.
Upon arrival, he said, he met the complainant — the landlord — along with her husband on the scene. The complainant told him of the alleged assault, and he noticed that she had a red substance which appeared to be blood on her right knee, elbow, arm and palm.
Officer Matthias proceeded to capture photos of those suspected injuries on his smartphone, Officer Matthias told the court.
The officer said the complainant (the landlord) said Nicholson beat and choked her with a hose.
According to Officer Matthias, the landlord had also claimed that Nicholson told her: ‘How you get so f***** miserable? I’m going to break your f***** neck’.
Officer Matthias said he visited the second floor of the apartment building, where Nicholson lived with her children. However, she was not home.
Her children informed him that she had visited a laundry where she was subsequently met and invited to the Road Town Police Station for an interview, to which she complied.
Officer Matthias said there were no cameras installed on the property, and there were no eyewitnesses to the incident.
The Police officer testified that Nicholson said she was at her home on the day in question cleaning her apartment and the verandah where the landlord’s cat had urinated.
While there, the landlord came from upstairs and after speaking to the accused to cease from using the cleaning detergents as it would affect her plants on the ground floor. The two then began to tussle over the hose.
During the tussle, Nicholas allegedly proceeded to release her end of the hose to prevent her from falling which, in turn, resulted in the landlord falling to the ground. The landlord had to seek medical attention for her injuries; the officer told the court.
Nicholson, who is employed in the medical profession also chose to give evidence in her own defence. She testified that she never touched or choked the landlord, nor did she threatened her.
She said the injuries the landlord sustained happened after tumbling down the stairs.
I am powerful
She said the landlord told her that she was a member of a prominent family in the British Virgin Islands and that she had influence throughout the territory.
The accused woman further said the landlord told her that she could cause her to become unemployed, and sent out of the BVI as she was the sister of a well-known legislator.
Nicholson said it was then that the landlord concocted the story that she (Nicholson) used assaulted and used threatening words to her.
Nicholson then proceeded to cry in court, stating that she was evicted from her apartment and that the landlord came to her job to spread lies about her. She said her lawyer Valerie Stephens-Gordon had to write the landlord a letter to put a stop to the harassment.
“I was really shaken up. Losing a job on lies is not fair,” she said. However, she did not lose her employment.
The matter is adjourned to March 3.
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