SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The Public Prosecutor’s Office (OM) has requested the Court to sentence suspect C.C.M. to 18 years in prison for the manslaughter of Natascha Schmidt on October 29, 2018 on Milton Drive in Dutch Quarter, the OM said in a statement on Wednesday.
“What started off as an argument between the suspect C.C.M. and former girlfriend L.M. ended in the tragic death of Natascha Schmidt. The suspect fired three shots. One shot to the head of Schmidt and thereafter two more shots were fired at three bystanders, Schmidt’s mother and a friend. They fortunately avoided the shots by ducking for cover on time.
“The life of Natascha Schmidt was brutally taken from her on October 29, 2018. A mother notably, but not just a mother, a mother of 7 children. A mother who after a difficult time had finally been able to get her life back in order. This is by far the most significant aspect of this case,” according to the Public Prosecutor.
“In short four more persons were made victims in this case, by the actions of the suspect. This incident foremost did not only impact the lives of Natascha’s seven children, but also many others in the community. Although the facts are all interrelated, this does not take away from the seriousness and impact it had on the various victims. Such incidents generate feelings of insecurity, surely in a small country as Sint Maarten or in a small village as Dutch Quarter.”
“The Public Prosecutor considers the attempted manslaughter on two of the three bystanders proven on bases of the (1) short shooting range, (2) the fact that there was a shot aimed at Schmidt’s head and (3) the fact that the accused, based on the manner in which Schmidt was gunned down , clearly had the intention to make her and others victims.
“C.C.M. has placed the blame on Schmidt and claims self-defense, alleging that he had been attacked with a Taser. “There is no mention of this on file and not one witness saw this Taser nor had the police found a Taser.” Moreover, the suspect had no bodily abrasions that would’ve been sustained from a Taser.
“The suspect has taken little responsibility for his actions. At several instances he appeared sympathetic, but not entirely sincere.” This is relevant to conclusions of C.C.M.’s psychiatric report.
“The OM feels that C.C.M.’s risk of reoffending is much higher than outlined in the psychiatric report. In this respect, the Public Prosecution Service has taken C.C.M.’s high risk diagnoses predominately into account in its arguments.
“The suspect had a track record, in a previous case for example there were indications that the suspect fired shots at victim E. on February 16, 2016. Furthermore C.C.M. was convicted for threatening former girlfriend K.F. on November 13, 2016 and also convicted for mistreating then girlfriend L.M. and L.M.’s daughter D.M. both on June 18, 2018.
“C.C.M. was just handed down the conviction for the mistreatment of L.M. on August 18, 2018 and just two months later on October 29, 2018 the tragedy occurred. For the old cases C.C.M. received a 3-month suspended prison sentence and a suspended community service sentence of 180 hours. The Public Prosecution Service is now calling for full execution of this sentence, whereby community service should be executed as a prison sentence.”
The judge will render his decision on March 6, 2019 at 8:30am.