A man who beat a senior citizen to death had his prison sentence reduced on Tuesday.
Ashley Hield was in 2019 sentenced to 30 years’ imprisonment for causing the death of JohnHenry Frazier.
The Court of Appeal judges dismissed Hield’s appeal against his conviction.
However, they cut his sentence from 30 years to 20 years. The sentence was further reduced to 16 years and five months after he received credit for three years and seven months that he had spent in custody awaiting trial.
Hield was originally charged with murder, but the jury convicted Hield of the lesser offense of manslaughter after accepting that there had been provocation.
According to the prosecution’s case, Frazier had asked his friend Theodore Hutchinson to drive his old car home on August 24, 2015.
Hutchinson followed Frazier, who had bought a new car. However, the car that Hutchinson was driving got a flat tire. Hutchinson honked his horn and Frazier stopped and both cars pulled on the side of the road.
Frazier offered two men, one of them Hield, $5 to help him put on the spare. However, Frazier only had $20 in his wallet, so he sent Hutchinson to a nearby store to get change. Frazier remained behind. He was wearing all white, a hat and a chain around his neck.
Hutchinson was gone for about 10 minutes. When he returned the car’s trunk was still up, and he saw two other men inside the vehicle apparently searching.
When Hutchinson asked the men what they were doing, they replied, “Nothing Paps,” and ran through a walkway on a vacant property across the street.
Three minutes later, he saw Frazier emerge from the same walkway. He was holding his shirt on top of his head, which was bleeding. His clothing was muddied, and his chain was gone.
Frazier told Hutchinson that the men who were supposed to be changing the tire, snatched his chain and ran off.
Frazier died several days later in hospital.
A witness said that he saw an older man in white following a younger man. According to the witness, the older man appeared to be begging for something.
The younger man turned around and repeatedly struck the older man in the head with a conch shell, according to the witness. He continued to hit the man even after he fell to the ground. The witness said that two men restrained the younger man, but he broke free and hit his victim several more times.
In his testimony, Hield claimed that Frazier tried to rush him while changing the tire. According to Hield, when he got up to leave, Frazier pushed him and Frazier’s chain popped during the ensuing tussle.
He said he walked off, but Frazier followed him and demanded payment for the damaged chain.
Hield alleged that Frazier threw a rock at him and then charged at him with a broken bottle, putting him in fear.
The Court of Appeal said the trial judge fell into error by imposing a sentence that was more appropriate for murder.
Public Defender Stanley Rolle represented Hield and Linda Evans appeared for the DPP.