2961927

It was a crime that shook the nation, leaving many in tears and others in a complete state of bewilderment.

On the afternoon of Tuesday, March 28, 2006, news spread that six-year-old Sean Luke had been reported missing from his Orange Valley, Carapichaima home.

His mother told police she was asleep while six-year-old Sean was outside playing as he was accustomed doing.

But when darkness fell, little Sean was nowhere to be found.

After searching, Sean was found nude and dead in a canefield.

There was speculation that he was sodomised.

An autopsy conducted by Pathologist Dr Eastlyn Mc Donald Burris revealed the little boy died in an agonising manner – a sugar cane stalk had been inserted into the child’s rectum, ruptured his intestines and caused severe damage to his internal organs. He died from internal bleeding. The sugarcane stalk was pushed so far into the child that it reached his throat.

The details of the smiling, playful boy’s final moments sent the nation in an uproar.

Pathologist Burris would later say conducting the post mortem on Sean was one of the “most unforgettable” in her 20-year career.

But what was even just as alarming as the details of the child’s murder, were the arrest of two boys then ages 12 and 15.

Now almost 15 years after the gruesome crime was committed, Sean’s mother, relatives and the nation are all yet to see the wheels of justice turn.

Since the two boys were charged with the murder of the little Sean, the trial has been struggling to get off the ground.

It has been plagued with legal technicalities and changes in attorneys for both the defence and State.

While these are not uncommon in legal matters of this nature, the nation’s hunger for answers remains in abeyance.

Over the years there have been numerous improvements in the criminal justice system but the delay in the timely completion of murder cases is a clear indication that more work is desperately required.

Advocates in criminal justice are often vocal about the impact a lengthy wait period for a trial to commence has on an accused, how unfair it is and how the rights of a prisoner are infringed.

While that may be the case, it is ever more woeful for the relatives of a victim to continue to hope for justice year after year, only to be told about delay after delay.

Sean Luke parents and loved ones deserve for this trial to be conducted properly, the facts – as gruesome as they are – to be ventilated in court and for the entire matter to come to a completion.

Little Sean Luke, who would have been 21, never got a chance to live, to see what his journey would be.

After all that has been said and done, all little Sean deserves now is justice.