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Driver, 16, charged as soldier dies in crash

By Susan Mohammed susan.mohammed@trinidadexpress.com

A 16-year-old boy was taken to court yesterday, charged with dangerous driving, following the death of soldier Junior Labarrie in a car crash on Monday.

The teenager appeared in the Chaguanas Magistrates’ Court on five traffic-related offences and was remanded in the custody of the Youth Training Centre at Arouca until next month. 

The boy, from Erin, appeared before Magistrate Brahmanand Dubay on charges of dangerous driving without a driver’s permit, driving without insurance, failing to produce a driver’s permit and failing to produce a certificate of insurance. He pleaded guilty to all the charges.

Dubay ordered a probation officer’s report of the teenager and postponed the case until March 12. 

Police said that on Monday around 9.30 a.m., Labarrie, of Waterloo, Carapichaima, was a passenger in a Nissan Tiida driven by Christian John, heading south along the Solomon Hochoy Highway. 

Police said in the vicinity of Seereram Brothers Ltd, a Nissan Almera driven by a 16-year-old boy attempted to make a U-turn through the police surveillance bay and collided with John’s vehicle.

John and Labarrie, the teenager and two passengers in the Nissan Almera were taken to Eric Williams Medical Science Complex, Mt Hope, for treatment. 

Labarrie, 29, succumbed to his injuries several hours later.

The teenage driver was released from hospital and Corporal Ronnie Gopaul, of Freeport Police Station, laid the charges against him. 

Trinidad and Tobago Regiment Warrant Officer Lester Hills said Labarrie had eight years and three months’ service.

“He was a very good soldier and very nice individual, and his death is a loss to the Regiment. We extend condolences to his family and loved ones.”

Labarrie will likely be given a military funeral, the Express was told.

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