Soca Warriors player Anthony Wolfe who was beaten on the head with a baton by a senior police officer has been awarded $20,000 in damages and costs.
A consent order was entered before Justice Charmaine Pemberton in the Port-of-Spain High Court yesterday, signalling the end of the matter in which Wolfe claimed damages for the attack.
Wolfe, who celebrates his 26th birthday later this month, plays for Ma Pau in the T&T Pro League. He also played for the T&T Soca Warriors in the recent qualifying series for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
The court heard that on January 10, 2006, there was a peaceful demonstration by villagers at the North Manzanilla Junction gas station. The villagers were protesting for better lights, water and proper roads for the area.
Around 10 am, there was a heated exchange of words between villagers and the police officers at the scene. ASP Junior Copeland arrived on the scene with several police officers and he began to hit a protester on the chest with his baton. That villager was then put in a police car.
Copeland, according to Wolfe, did the same thing to another villager. Wolfe, who knew Copeland from since he was a boy, went across to see what was happening. He said Copeland struck him in the chest with the baton, and followed that up with a blow to the left side of the head. Wolfe started to bleed and was taken by a taxi driver to the Sangre Grande District Hospital for medical attention.
That same day, Wolfe reported the matter to the Police Complaints Authority, and some time later, brought an action against Copeland and the Attorney General for damages.
The State did not contest the matter and they agreed to pay Wolfe $20,000 in damages, as well as costs for his attorney, Keith Scotland.
The AG was represented by Rehanna Ali. While the matter was pending, Copeland found himself on the other side of the law. Copeland, 58, was charged with the murder of Ashley Charles, 25, on Christmas Day last year.
He was also charged with attempting to murder Charles’ mother, June, and younger brother, Makinaki, 18. Charles died after he was shot during an altercation close to his home on Matura Road, off Demerara Road in Arima.