La Loche shooting case delayed as Crown prosecutor appointed to become a judge

By Kathy Gallant
September 1, 2017 - 10:07am

Proceedings in the sentencing hearing for the shootings in La Loche were set to resume this morning, but have now been delayed as former Crown prosecutor Lloyd Stang has been appointed to the bench as a judge. Further Crown cross-examination will take place on Monday, Sept. 11.

Today's hearing was a continuation for the sentencing hearings for the teen who shot 11 people in La Loche on January 22, 2016, killing four and injuring seven

On Aug. 25, the scheduled final arguments in the case were delayed after a Gladue report – which delves into factors of an indigenous offender – brought to light the drinking history of the youth’s biological mother. With this information, two defence witness, psychiatrist Dr. Mansfield Mela and neuropsychologist Dr. Monty Nelson diagnosed the boy with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.

Appearing via phone last week, Crown prosecutor Lloyd Stang requested to cross-examine these witnesses. 

Because he was weeks shy of his 18th birthday at the time of the incident, the shooter cannot be named under provisions in the Youth Criminal Justice Act. The hearings will ultimately determine if he will be sentenced as an adult. He pleaded guilty in October 2016 to the second degree murders of Dayne and Drayden Fontaine, aged 13 and 17-years-old respectively, who were killed in a home. He also pleaded guilty to the first degree murders of 35-year-old teacher Adam Wood and 21-year-old teachers’ aide Marie Janvier, who were gunned down at La Loche Community School.

Speaking in a Meadow Lake courtroom last week, Judge Janet McIvor, Stang, and defence lawyer Aaron Fox concurred that it is important the case "keeps moving forward." An emotional two weeks of sentencing hearings took place May 16-19 and June 13-16 where court heard numerous victim impact statements, recordings of police interviews, psychological assessments from both Crown and defence witnesses, and statements from the shooter himself.

More to come.


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