Judge says second-degree murder case not unreasonably delayed

Defence lawyer argued Red Deer man’s trial will take place outside Supreme Court 30-month deadline

A Red Deer judge ruled on Monday that the case of a man charged with second-degree murder is not taking unreasonably long to get to trial.

Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Bill Hopkins ruled that when all delays were factored in the case the 30-month threshold will not have been reached if Daniel Boyd Sawyer’s trial goes ahead as scheduled in November.

Under a 2016 Supreme Court of Canada decision, a deadline of 18 months has been set for a case to go from charge to trial in most provincial court cases and 30 months in higher courts. In what is known as the Jordan decision, the country’s top court calls for dismissal of cases that have been subject to unreasonable delays.

Sawyer, 33, was charged with second-degree murder in connection with the stabbing death of Alan Beach, 31, during a brawl outside the Village Mall pub in November 2015.

He turned himself in nine days later and has been in custody since. He has pleaded not guilty and a jury trial is set to run Nov. 13-30 in Red Deer.

A number of cases involving serious charges have been dismissed across Canada following Jordan applications.

In April, an alleged gang leader facing first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder and instructing a criminal organization charges was allowed to walk free after a Calgary judge issued a stay saying the trial did not take place within a reasonable time.

The Sawyer case has also included issues around disclosure — the evidence Crown prosecutors will use to support their case.

Earlier this month, Hopkins rejected a defence application to have Sawyer’s charge stayed over evidence issues. It was the third unsuccessful non-disclosure application in the case.

Lawyer Chris Archer argued Crown prosecutors had failed to turn over all of the evidence they are required to by law.

Crown prosecutors said all necessary disclosure had been turned over and no stay is warranted.

The reasons for the judge’s decisions in the Jordan and non-disclosure applications are subject to a publication ban.



News tips

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Random Acts of Green Canadian tour comes to Red Deer

Red Deerians are being encouraged to lessen their impact on the environment.… Continue reading

Red Deer economy bouncing back but slowly: report

While Red Deer’s economy has been in recovery mode for the past… Continue reading

Red Deer cyclist dead after being hit by vehicle

A Red Deer man was killed after being hit by a vehicle… Continue reading

Support for retaining ‘public’ in Alberta school titles could snowball, says local trustee

Even districts that never had the word in their titles are now discussing adding it

Multiple Oktoberfest events coming up in Red Deer

Red Deerians will have several chances to take part in one of… Continue reading

WATCH: 2019 Canada Winter Games will leave a lasting legacy, say organizers

It leaves Red Deer with the infrastructure and confidence to host future such events

Your community calendar

Wednesday Central Alberta Historical Society annual general meeting is 6 p.m. at… Continue reading

Couche-Tard wants to be a player in the sale of cannabis

LAVAL, Que. — Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. wants to be one of the… Continue reading

Michael Dawe: A safe supply of water has long been a priority for Red Deer

The oldest part of the Red Deer water treatment plant on 54th… Continue reading

New parent charged in admissions scam, linked to $400K bribe

BOSTON — A woman accused of paying $400,000 to get her son… Continue reading

Canadian stars Virtue, Moir say in video they’re “stepping away” from ice dancing

Canadian ice dancing stars Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir say they are… Continue reading

Bruce Cockburn avoids impulse to get political with lyric-less new album

TORONTO — If anyone is looking for activist folk singer Bruce Cockburn… Continue reading

13 seasons in, stars reflect on success of ‘Heartland,’ Canada’s ‘comfort food’

HIGH RIVER, Alta. — Alberta-born actor Shaun Johnston had already had a… Continue reading

N.S. senior whose birthday card request drew international response dies

SYDNEY, N.S. — A Nova Scotia widower who received thousands of birthday… Continue reading

Most Read