Court briefs – May 14

A man charged with a vicious assault that resulted in serious head injuries to the victim was ordered to stand trial on Tuesday.

Assault suspect to stand trial

A man charged with a vicious assault that resulted in serious head injuries to the victim was ordered to stand trial on Tuesday.

Dorian Anthony Ladds, 22, of Red Deer could have a Court of Queen’s Bench trial set on June 1, when he appears again in court.

Ladds was ordered to stand trial by provincial court Judge David Plosz following a preliminary hearing during which one of the Crown witnesses testified via closed circuit television from New Brunswick.

Ladds is charged with aggravated assault, possession of a weapon dangerous to the public, possession of a load, prohibited weapon, careless handling and storage of a weapon and possessing a weapon without a licence.

He was charged in March 2008 after the 34-year-old victim, Jimmy Arsenault, originally from New Brunswick, was beaten with a baseball bat and stabbed while outside a downtown Red Deer apartment.

The victim was in a coma for 18 days before he opened his eyes.

He was hospitalized for several weeks before returning to New Brunswick.

Ladds elected earlier to be tried by a judge and jury.

Woman admits to manslaughter

A woman charged with killing a man and then burning a van containing his body was handed another four years in jail on Wednesday.

Carlea Wetheral, 40, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and indignity to a human body when she appeared in Wetaskiwin court.

A charge of arson to a motor vehicle was withdrawn.

Wetheral had been in custody since her arrest shortly after the body of Hugh Frank Oswald, 57, of Red Deer, was found on April 10, 2008. She was credited with two years in jail based on the generally accepted principle of two-for-one credit for time spent in pre-trial custody.

She was also ordered to surrender a sample of her DNA and is prohibited from owning or possessing firearms for 10 years after her release from prison.

Oswald’s body was found inside a burning van on an oil lease road halfway between Rocky Mountain House and Rimbey.

Gale van Oosterhout, 48, of Westerose, faces similar charges in the case and returns to court on May 26.

She was released from jail on bail about two months after being charged.

No-contact list revised by judge

A teenager charged with murder can now contact two more people off a list of previously banned to him, a judge ruled on Wednesday.

Brett Donald Jones, 19, of Red Deer appeared in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench to have the consent order heard by Justice L.D. Acton.

Crown prosecutor Jason Snider told court that both people concerned had been contacted and consented to being taken off the list.

The people are not necessarily potential witnesses in Jones’s court case.

The two people were originally placed on a list of people Jones was prohibited from contacting while his case is before the courts.

In addition, court heard Jones hasn’t made an application for release yet.

Any bail application must be heard in Queen’s Bench.

Jones has a scheduled preliminary hearing from Jan. 18 to 22, 2010, to determine if he should stand trial.

Jones is charged with first-degree murder after the body of Teagan Klein, 23, was discovered in a home in Anders subdivision on Feb. 4.

He also faces charges of two counts of robbery and single counts of theft, unlawful confinement and assault causing bodily harm.

Jones is accused of assaulting a young boy whose name was placed on a court-ordered publication ban.

The toddler, who was treated in hospital, was discovered in Klein’s home suffering from injuries that weren’t considered life-threatening.

Jones is represented by Calgary lawyer Alain Hepner, who was not present Wednesday.

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