University student steals $215,000 phone

September 19, 2023

A university student who admitted to stealing a cell phone was scolded by a senior parish judge, who stressed that she ought to have known better.

Senior Parish Judge Lori-Anne Cole-Montaque was vocal in her disappointment as she scolded Ashley Linton, who appeared in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court on Monday to be sentenced for larceny by trick. Prosecutors contend that the complainant was selling an iPhone costing $215,000 and Linton contacted him, stating her interest in the product. It is reported that Linton met with the complainant, and was handed the phone while she was seated in a vehicle. The court heard that upon receiving the iPhone, the driver of the motor vehicle in which Linton was seated sped off.

"I have no intention of letting you go. You are a university student and I sit here as a judge, I am very mindful that I send messages to members of the public. So if I can't come in here and pet and powder people and 'soft soft' with people. This is serious business! Look at the man without use of his phone and you know better, look at that! You are in the percentage of those who know better, who are supposed to do better. You are remanded in custody," Judge Cole-Montaque said.

It was further shared with the court that the phone has not yet been recovered.

"I don't have it. I gave it to a guy name [name redacted] in the phone business," Linton admitted.

"Look at you wasting your life at just 22. So you thought you would get away with it? How much thought did you put into this?" the judge quizzed.

Linton, who is currently unemployed, replied "not much".

The judge then ordered that Linton make restitution in the amount of $230,000 for stealing the man's phone and for the inconvenience he might have faced as a result of the theft.

"So what about bail? So if I pay the money I won't be released?" Linton asked, as she stood nervously in the prisoner's dock.

"I am not making any promises for a release. This is a criminal court, this is serious business. Very often I find that people come to court and sometimes even lawyers give the impression that when you go to court, you will just pay some money and you will walk. I do not subscribe to that thinking, and as long as I am a judge in this parish, that will not happen. That means there will be no consequences for wrongs and that can't happen," Judge Cole-Montaque noted.

Linton is expected to begin payment on November 14 when she is to be brought back to court.

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