Acquitted Ontario teacher home from Jamaica
An Ontario schoolteacher returned to the Toronto area late Wednesday night, one week after a Jamaican jury acquitted him of allegations that he attacked his wife, and said he was excited to reunite with his two children.
Paul Martin, a schoolteacher in Ajax, Ont., was greeted with hugs from his family as he returned to Canadian soil on Wednesday, landing at Toronto's Pearson International Airport 11 months after he and his wife left for a vacation in Jamaica.
Last December, Martin and his wife were supposed to fly home on the day that Cathy-Lee was found with her throat slashed by the side of a road.
She claimed her husband had tried to kill her, but Martin said his wife had been the aggressor and she received her injuries during a struggle between them.
"Long story short I defended myself," Martin told reporters on Wednesday, declining to go into details. "I have never ever harmed my wife and I never tried to harm my wife that day. Everything I did that day was to protect her."
Authorities had accused Martin of the attempted murder of his wife, Cathy-Lee Clayson, but a Jamaican jury found him not guilty of the lesser charge of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm last week.
An online report on the Jamaica Observer website said the jurors deliberated for only an hour before returning a verdict.
His now-estranged wife told reporters outside of the airport in Jamaica last week that she is scared of her husband.
"I don't know what that man is capable of," she said through tears.
Martin said he was touched by the support he received from the people of Jamaica and the Catholic Church during the ordeal.
"Everybody I met said the same thing over and over again, ‘Paul you're a good man; the Lord knows you're innocent, have faith in him and he'll bring you home to your children.'"
Martin is still employed by the Durham Catholic District School Board and says he wants to return to work as soon as possible.
He added that his focus is on seeing his three- and six-year-old children, but that he understands his return will be difficult and confusing for them to understand.
"The most important thing is to move forward and do what's best for them. They are beautiful kids and I'm going to do everything possible to make it a peaceful environment for them and a stable environment for them," Martin said.