While calling for the names of his victims to be immortalized, Supreme Court Judge Justice Leighton Pusey is hopeful that Jamaicans will discard mass murderer Rushane Barnett’s name in the landfill of history.
These comments came on Thursday, during his sentencing of Barbette who received five life sentences for the murder of his cousin and her four children back in June.
Barnette, in July, pleaded guilty to killing 31-year-old mother Kimesha Wright, her children 15-year-old Kimanda Smith, 11-year-old Shara-Lee Smith, five-year-old Rafaella Smith, and 23-month-old Kishawn Henry, after he said she had disrespected him.
The Judge said Wright should not have met that fate after opening her heart and home to her cousin who turned around and butchered her and her children.
“What we need to remember in this matter is the lives of the persons who lost their lives, and I have deliberately been mentioning their names continuously. I have also been deliberate in not mentioning the name of the accused man because it is my eternal hope that we will forget his name, although it seems as if his name has [gone] wide and abroad.
“In the same way as other persons who have committed similar offenses, they’ve become a footnote and are only remembered when we look for legal precedence. I would hope that we remember these people. Miss Wright, in particular, was significant as a young woman who was looking after her four children and also studying and finding time to run a shop,” he said.
He lamented on the children who had dreams and hopes of joining their father overseas.
“Kishawn Henry, his father will not have the opportunity of seeing him go to school,” the Judge continued.
“I think it’s important also to remember, for Miss Wright, that she was somebody who, despite the difficulties she had, she was still able to be generous enough to try to help somebody who was in need. And I think it was important enough for us to celebrate that generosity, and don’t think of it as something which opened her to the situation that happened. In other words, it was not her fault, it was others who were responsible,” Justice Pusey added.
Avoiding mentioning the details of the crime, he noted that “This is a crime for which adjectives and descriptions were insufficient and which shocked and horrified a nation, even in this country which has unfortunately gotten too used to murder.”