A man accused of killing a Red Deer physician told a judge he was sick and did not remember the alleged attack.
Deng Mabiour, 54, of Red Deer, appeared in Red Deer provincial court through a closed-circuit video link with the Red Deer Remand Centre, where Mabiour is being held in custody under quarantine.
Mabiour is charged with first-degree murder for the death of Dr. Walter Reynolds, who was mortally wounded in his medical walk-in clinic in north Red Deer around 11 a.m. on Monday. The father of two died later in hospital.
The accused is also charged with assaulting a police officer who responded to the 911 call and assaulting with a machete another doctor at the Village Mall Walk-In Clinic.
RCMP say it was not a random attack and Reynolds and Mabiour knew each other through the clinic. Police would not say whether Mabiour was a patient, citing privacy laws.
In his Wednesday morning court appearance, an agitated Mabiour repeatedly interrupted Judge Bert Skinner.
“Give me a doctor. I’m a sick man,” he said.
“I tell you, I didn’t remember anything. I am sick. I need a doctor.
“When I get healthy, I will remember everything,” he said at one point.
Skinner told duty counsel Mark Daoust that he was struggling to understand Mabiour, who spoke with a thick accent and several times said “listen to me” as he tried to address the court.
“I don’t need an explanation,” Skinner told the accused. “I just need to know that you understand the charges.”
Skinner asked Daoust to speak to Mabiour in private to ensure he understood the charges and to ask the accused if he needed an interpreter.
When Daoust returned about 20 minutes later, he told the judge that Mabiour had told him he did not need an interpreter.
Skinner once again told the accused that he was only trying to ensure he understood the three charges against him.
“You don’t have to agree with them, but we have to make sure you understand what you’re charged with.”
The charges were read to Mabiour by a court clerk a second time.
“No, I don’t remember because I’m sick. I lost memory,” he appeared to respond.
Skinner set the case over to Sept. 9 in provincial court.
“Do whatever you want to do,” Mabiour responded.
He was told he would be tried by a judge and jury in Court of Queen’s Bench unless he makes an application to be tried by a judge alone.
Any bail hearing must be held in the higher court, the judge told Mabiour, urging him to have a lawyer for his next court appearance.
A vigil for Reynolds has been set for 7 p.m. at Red Deer City Hall Park.
A GoFundMe account for Reynold’s family had raised nearly $180,000 by Wednesday afternoon.