A Red Deer man accused of murdering a recent arrival from Prince Edward Island last March is to be freed on bail.
Quentin Lee Strawberry’s bail hearing took place in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench last Friday.
Evidence presented at a bail hearing, and reasons for the judge’s decision allowing him to be released from prison, are covered by a publication ban.
Strawberry, then 38, has been in custody since his arrest on April 16 and was expected to be released on Wednesday.
He will return to court on Feb. 28 to begin a five-day preliminary hearing on charges of second-degree murder and assault causing bodily harm in connection with the death of Joseph Junior Alfred Gallant, 45.
RCMP were called to a Grandview home around midnight on March 29. Neighbours phoned 911 after Gallant, who had been stabbed, called for help. The father of two died later in hospital.
Neighbours said Gallant and a woman lived together in the small Grandview home. The couple was described as quiet and good neighbours.
Gallant had come to Red Deer for work from Prince Edward Island less than four months before his death.
Defence lawyer Maurice Collard said Strawberry “maintains his innocence. He’s very happy to make bail on these charges and return to the community.
“The (Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms) dictates Mr. Strawberry is presumed innocent,” said Collard. “He looks forward to vigorously defending against these charges.
“I am confident he will not be convicted of murder. Decisions like this should increase public confidence in the administration of justice.”
Jennifer Lee Caswell has also been charged with second-degree murder and assault causing bodily harm. Caswell, who was 37 when arrested last April, was previously released from custody and is awaiting a preliminary hearing.
The hearings, which are subject to a publication ban, are held to determine if there is enough evidence to go to trial.