Illustration by THE CANADIAN PRESS Defence attorney Scott Spencer listens in court during the trial of Gerald Stanley in this courtroom sketch in North Battleford, Sask., on Thursday.

Judge in Gerald Stanley murder trial addresses witness inconsistencies with jury

BATTLEFORD, Sask. — Saskatchewan’s chief justice addressed some inconsistencies Friday in the testimony from key Crown witnesses at the trial of a farmer accused of murdering an Indigenous man.

Justice Martel Popescul’s mid-trial instructions to the jury came a day after some witnesses to the killing admitted on the stand that they made last-minute changes to their stories and lied to investigators.

“Common sense tells you that if a witness says one thing in the witness box, but has said something quite different on an earlier occasion, this may reduce the value of his or her evidence,” Popescul told jurors Friday before the Crown rested its case.

Gerald Stanley, 56, is accused of second-degree murder in the death of 22-year-old Colten Boushie near Biggar, Sask., on Aug. 9, 2016.

Boushie was sitting in the driver’s seat of a grey Ford Escape SUV when he was shot to death on Stanley’s farm. Boushie’s friends have testified that they were looking for help with a flat tire when they went to the farm.

Stanley’s son has testified that his father told him he was only trying to scare the young people away and the gun just went off.

Popescul was addressing the testimony of Eric Meechance, Cassidy Cross and Belinda Jackson, who were in the SUV with Boushie.

Cross admitted Thursday that he had lied to police in his initial statement about carrying a gun, how much alcohol he had consumed and about breaking into a truck on the day his friend was killed.

Jackson initially told police she saw a woman shoot Boushie.

“I wouldn’t say I lied to them. I didn’t tell them the whole truth,” Jackson said Thursday. “Everything started coming back to me later when I was on my own.”

Popescul said jurors should consider any explanation the witnesses gave for the differences.

“Consider whether the differences are significant,” he said. “You should also consider the fact, nature and extent of any differences when you decide whether to rely on their testimony.”

Just Posted

Red Deerians brave the chill to spend Family Day in the new Celebration Plaza

The 2019 Canada Winter Games hub attracted a lot of parents and kids

Stettler RCMP search for suspects

Attempted theft of an ATM

Sign cost a concern for some in Red Deer

Installation complete on south end welcome signs

Historic win for Team Nunavut at Canada Winter Games

Four years in the making boiled down to a collection of firsts… Continue reading

Canadian women beat US 2-0 to win inaugural Rivalry Series

DETROIT — The inaugural Rivalry Series was created to give Canada and… Continue reading

Don Cherry blasts Hurricanes as ‘jerks’; team responds with his words on T-shirt

TORONTO — Don Cherry’s latest rant about the Carolina Hurricanes and their… Continue reading

Country star Miranda Lambert reveals secret marriage

NASHVILLE — Country star Miranda Lambert celebrated Valentine’s Day weekend with the… Continue reading

‘Black Panther’ costume designer blazes trail to inspire

LOS ANGELES — Ruth E. Carter is a black woman blazing a… Continue reading

Chicago police: Jussie Smollett assault case has ‘shifted’

Chicago police said Saturday the investigation into the assault reported by Jussie… Continue reading

Still-active human rights case speaks to lasting homophobia in Canada: activists

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Just over 14 years ago, the government of… Continue reading

Alberta missionaries among the Canadians heading home from riot-stricken Haiti

MONTREAL — A Canadian couple who had to leave Haiti due to… Continue reading

Man charged in daughter’s death in hospital with self-inflicted gunshot wound: police

Police say a man charged with first-degree murder in the death of… Continue reading

Most Read