Fri | Jun 21, 2024

Shineka Gray's killer sentenced to life in prison

Published:Friday | April 12, 2024 | 11:38 AM
Shineka Gray, who was a grade 10 student of Green Pond High School in St James, was last seen alive in Montego Bay on January 29, 2017 while making her way home from the funeral of a schoolmate. - File photo

The St James Circuit Court this morning sentenced Gregory Roberts, the man convicted of the 2017 murder of 15-year-old schoolgirl Shineka Gray, to life imprisonment with no chance of parole before serving 42 years behind bars.

Roberts wore a distant expression as presiding High Court Justice Bertram Morrison handed down the sentence during today's final day of the defendant's prolonged sentencing hearing.

In handing down his judgment, Justice Morrison denounced Roberts' killing of young Gray, who was stabbed 19 times on the night of January 29, 2017, as a gruesome and sadistic act.

"It reminds me of the days when I used to witness the slaughtering of animals, of goats and pigs," Morrison said starkly.

The judge also pointed to Roberts' previous criminal record, including convictions for simple larceny and escaping custody, as well as the evidence that Roberts and his former co-defendant Mario Morrison had sex with the underage Gray and then video recorded her killing, as aggravating factors.

However, Justice Morrison deducted Roberts' time in custody since 2017 from the proposed 50-year starting point for his life sentence, resulting in Roberts being required to serve 42 years, nine months, and 21 days before he will be eligible for parole.

Meanwhile, Roberts' attorney Chumu Parris advised the court that his client will be appealing the sentence.

Shineka Gray, who was a grade 10 student of Green Pond High School in St James, was last seen alive in Montego Bay on January 29, 2017 while making her way home from the funeral of a schoolmate. Her body was found three days later in bushes in the Irwin community.

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