US national pleads guilty to possession of firearm and ammo; court says arrest/detention of minors was unlawful

Jason James Grogg

It was a long day in court for Jason James Grogg and members of his family. Presently, the United States of America (USA) citizen awaits the sentence of the court following his guilty plea to possession of several rounds of ammunition and a firearm.

On April 17, 2023, members of the Anti-Crime Task Force of the Commonwealth of Dominica Police Force (CDPF), along with the investigation unit of the Customs and Excise Division, executed a search warrant on a certain premise at Belfast, where Grogg resides.

During the search, a firearm and a quantity of ammunition were seized for investigation.

A 40-foot storage container which he possessed and which was stored on the compound of a church/youth centre in Mahaut, was searched and following the discovery of several other ammunitions, the items were seized for investigation.

Consequent to the discovery, Jason James Grogg, his wife Jennifer Elaine Grogg, their 18-year-old daughter, Hannah Elaine Grogg as well as their three minor children ages 16, 14, and 12 all US citizens, were arrested by the police.

While the three adults along with the 16-year-old were kept in police cells, the 14 and 12-year-old children were placed at a children’s home in Dominica in State custody and released a few days later.

On April 21, attorneys Julien Prevost and Jilane Prevost who represent the family filed an urgent writ of Habeas Corpus.

The four individuals were subsequently charged by the police after the writ was filed.

At Monday’s High Court hearing, the defense attorneys argued that their clients were subjected to several hours of constitutional false imprisonment since they were detained by the police for more than 72 hours of their arrest, delayed investigation, and an abuse of process by the police.

Following arguments by State and defense counsels, Dominica’s new High court Judge, His Lordship, the Hon. Justice Thomas W. R. Astaphan, ordered that on admission by the investigating officer, Sergeant Lindon Timothy, the detention of the 12, 14 and 16-year-old children was unlawful from inception contrary to section 3 of the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Dominica.

He further ordered the release of the 16-year-old girl who the police had since charged.

His Lordship, however, ruled that the detention of Jason, Jennifer, and Hannah Grogg was reasonable, lawful, and justifiable in the course of the investigation.

The three individuals were then taken to the Magistrate’s court where the charges were read to them.

There, the first two charges of trafficking were read. However, Mr. and Mrs. Grogg were not required to enter a plea since these matters are indictable offenses and are expected to be heard at the High Court.

The police allege that between September 21 and 25, 2021, at the Wood Bridge Bay Port, Jason and Jennifer Grogg did engage in the unlawful trafficking of 120 rounds of 5.56mm ammunition, 17 rounds of universal 20-gauge ammunition, 45 rounds of .9mm ammunition, one 57mm M16 spent shell casing, three 20mm M21A1B1 spent shell casing, three 20mm projectile, and one 37mm M63 projectile.

Additionally, they are accused of illegally trafficking in one .9mm Glock 19 pistol, three .9mm 15-round capacity magazines, and four 30-round capacity 5.56 magazines.

The remaining charges were either-way offenses and the accused individuals opted for a summary trial in the Magistrate’s court.

The charges were as follows, Jennifer and Jason Grogg were charged with two counts of possession of firearm for having in their possession 17 rounds of universal 20-gauge Winchester ammunition and four 5.56mm magazines on April 18, 2023, at the Woodbridge Bay Port without being the holder of a valid firearm license. Jason James Grogg pleaded guilty to both charges while Jennifer pleaded not guilty.

In keeping with the High Court order, the prosecution withdrew the charges against the 16-year-old, but 18-year-old Hannah Grogg was jointly charged on five complaints with her parents.

The trio was accused of illegally having in their possession one 15-round capacity 9mm firearm magazine, one Glock 19 9.9mm pistol, and 15 rounds of .9mm ammunition on April 17, 2023, at Belfast, Mahaut.

They were further charged with illegal possession of 30 rounds of .9mm ammunition and two 15-round capacity 9mm magazines on April 18, 2023, at Belfast, Mahaut.

Jason pleaded guilty to the additional five complaints while Jennifer and Hannah Grogg pleaded not guilty.

After the charges were read, the police prosecutor sought an adjournment to seek guidance from the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP).

When the matter resumed at 2:00 p.m., DPP Sherma Dalrymple who was present in court withdrew all complaints against Jennifer and Hannah Grogg which Jason Grogg had pleaded guilty to.

The matter was adjourned to April 25, 2023, for facts and sentencing. Regarding the indictable matters against Mr and Mrs Grogg, Dalrrmple informed the court that a certain course of action will be taken following the sentence of the court.

The DPP then made an application pursuant to section 212 of the Magistrate Code of Procedure to have the accused individuals placed in the custody of the investigating officer until their return to court on Tuesday.

Dominica News Online (DNO) has since been informed that diplomatic representatives from the US Embassy are in Dominica and have since conducted interviews with the family and are closely monitoring the matter.


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  1. Augustus Baron
    March 15, 2024

    there a lot more behind this than you think, that sounds like a cult to me, the government of Dominica has to be very careful when these churches come in the country,
    Dominican has to abide by the law and Foreigner can brake it all because they feel they are superior in their mind than black people.
    smfh they should give him some mail time before they Depot home, and he will find a way to come back, black people are so inferior they fall for all those false prophet carry them in head just a slave mentality they will fall for anything not me.
    you will be surprise that there was much more going on than what the government find.
    the go to Africa an do worst. Wolf in sheep clothing.

  2. Day Dreaming
    April 27, 2023

    Anonymous Comment on the Jason Grogg case update.

    Mr.Jason Grogg says he found the gun and ammunition in the container. He clams he accidentally packed it there. Mind you he also says he is an expert in “Gun safety”. Then after it arrives in DA, he accidentally finds it himself. Takes it to his home. Not to the police, like a “law abiding good citizen”. When the police raid his home, they find the gun, placed close to his bed. Fully loaded!!!! With extra ammunition also close by, just in case of an accidental need for more ammunition than guns😉👍🏼👍🏼 So Jason goes on to clams he had innocent, pure intentions. He is a missionary. Great reputation in Mahaut, he clams. Of course he accidentally did not tell the people of Mahaut or at the mission about his loaded gun and ammunition on their property. What would they think of him if they knew he was a gun holding crusader? When he came to the village at night, did he have his gun for protection? That’s all okay?
    Only a…

  3. Knot in it
    April 26, 2023

    Police should make similar searches at those Chinese residence because there containers are not searched.

  4. Vending machine
    April 26, 2023

    Is the 40ft container and its contents for sale? I need a container that’s loaded.

  5. If we knew better
    April 26, 2023

    i suspect them police dont know their job.

  6. Bring back the kidnapped parrots
    April 26, 2023

    Were they planning a coup with outside partners and were stockpiling weapons and ammunition for said planned coup using a fake “church” as camouflage?

  7. Dominica Strong
    April 25, 2023

    Look the Skerrit corrupt judiciary has already messed up the broth with too much bohio and soon that whole case will be revisited and subsequently dismissed. You mean top police officers did not know it’s unlawful to arrest minors? Boy something telling me that they were instructed to do so by top ranking people

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 7
  8. Come A While
    April 25, 2023

    I confused about the port part … does that mean a customs officer will be charged?? somebody help me please.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1
    • Cream of the crop
      April 26, 2023

      Not if he’s a Laborite. And you must be labor to have that position. So don’t hold your breath.

  9. Pat
    April 25, 2023

    Sleeper cells, if you just Google “20mm projectile”, you get a feeling how deep you’re in with those missionaries crusades Dominica, do your police even have close to that military grade stuff?

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1
  10. Jonathan Y St Jean
    April 25, 2023

    How dare Jason and his family come to a sovereign country and violate it’s laws? As a “so called” man of God he must have known that Dominica isn’t America and the good book asks us all to obey the laws, “render to Caesar what belongs to Caesar. If he felt unsafe then he should have set an example and applied for the necessary licenses or hire private security. His behavior is symbolic of some people in positions of authority who feel they can do as they want, “do as I say but not as I do”
    Note that US authorities are in the country to ensure he receives his rights under the constitution of Dominica yet when Dominicans find themselves in legal trouble overseas does the rulling regime provide them such cover? I doubt it. Wait for him and his wife to file lawsuits against Dominica for wrongful incarceration of their children. I say give this gangster wannabe the fullest punishment our laws allow.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 7
    • Think Tank
      April 27, 2023

      I’m sure if it were Dominicans before a US court for such charges, they would have been swiftly jailed and then deported!

    • Coco di
      March 15, 2024

      when you go to a country other than where you come from you avoid but the laws.
      that can tell you how dangerous this man is you get me.

  11. Ibo FranceP
    April 25, 2023

    Illegal guns and ammunition are wreaking havoc and mayhem throughout our countries in the Caribbean. It is creating economic instability and a paralyzing fear in society.

    It is therefore incumbent on the court to send an unequivocal message that anyone caught with unlicensed firearms and ammunition there will be no leniency at sentencing.

    I feel for the children as they have had to suffer and will be traumatised, most likely, for a lifetime.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 3
  12. derp
    April 25, 2023

    The police in Dominica clearly lack the knowledge to properly describe firearm shells and ammunition they say one 57mm M16 spent shell casing. If they did not mention the M16 one would thing they are speaking of an artillery weapon ammunition. The proper description would be a 7.92×57mm ammunition or whatever.

    • Bjd
      May 9, 2023

      Why can’t the wrong nomenclature be ascribed to the press. It’s often their printing mistake.

  13. MEME
    April 25, 2023

    Once they (the court), hear representatives from the US embassy are in Dominica, Grogg might all walk away as a free man or just get a slight touch on the wrist.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 3

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