GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands--The Speaker of the House in the Cayman Islands McKeeva Bush will not have to face a misdemeanour battery charge after all.

Less than a month after being arrested in connection with allegedly grabbing the backside of a waitress at a casino in Florida and being released on a US $1,000 bond, Bush was informed that the matter would go no further. State Attorney’s Office spokesman Ron Ishoy said the Broward State Attorney’s office in Fort Lauderdale filed a “no information” document indicating that it would not file a charge of misdemeanour battery against Bush.

It said it would explain the reason for the decision later.

Bush (62) was arrested on July 17 at a casino in Coral Creek, Florida, after a waitress there said he had grabbed her buttocks and pulled her towards him. He spent the night in custody, but was not formally charged at the time. Prosecutors had up to 21 days to determine whether they would proceed with the case against him.

His Florida attorney, Keith Seltzer, told the Cayman Compass that a decision to drop the matter could only have been made after a careful review of all the evidence available. “I am certain that the prosecutor determined that there was no evidence that a crime was committed and therefore no likelihood of obtaining a conviction for a battery offense, should they have elected to proceed further,” he said.

Bush had insisted that he was innocent and that the evidence would bear that out; and after the announcement of the decision that prosecutors would not proceed with the matter, he released a statement in which he said he wanted to put the matter behind him.

“The last few weeks have been very difficult for both me and my family, and the support we have received has helped us get through these difficult times. To my detractors, my only hope is that you never have to go through what my family and I have over the past few weeks; but if you do, hopefully those around you will not rush to judgment and say or write disparaging comments before the truth prevails,” he said.

“It is my desire to put this unfortunate incident behind us and get back to continuing to work with our government to make Grand Cayman the great place to reside and the wonderful, beautiful tourist destination.”

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