Pretrial eve. This only happens once a month for Perth Ontario’s accused criminals. I scroll through the list of criminally elite on the online docket. These cases haven’t taken a deal. At least not yet. That may change tomorrow. The purpose of a judicial pretrial is to either resolve the case (plea deal) or narrow issues for trial (agreed statement of facts.) This will be my fourth pretrial in the case but this time I get to speak to the Judge and Crown directly.
Pretrial day. I spend the first half hour speaking to the Judge and Crown. I spend another 45 minutes speaking to the Crown alone. I am not allowed to share our discussions, but he does say he reads my blog. I assure him it’s nothing personal and I truly believe he is trying his best to protect the public’s interest. He says he doesn’t think I’ll write that in my blog. I accept the challenge. Though I cannot share what was discussed, I can share the outcome. Two of my charges are withdrawn, which reduces the time for trial to four days instead of ten. I appear again a few days later, to set my trial date. The trial is set for September 19, 20, 26 and 27, 2018. A trial confirmation hearing is set for July 26, 2018.
Meanwhile in civil court…
Right after my criminal court appearance, I head down to the local office supply shop for some help with faxing documents. This store has been like a second office to me for years. This is how I serve my statement of defence to the agency’s crossclaim against me in civil court. This is probably the most important document in the civil case for me to file. There is a case conference and a motion happening this month. I’ve done a lot of work and travelling to Toronto to make sure nothing stalls the process. The plaintiff made a motion to request my criminal crown disclosure. I, of course, consented to this. I will be relying on the evidence within as well. The Civil Crown, however, said no as it may jeopardize my fair trial rights. I am preparing to argue that it will actually safeguard my fair trial rights, not impede them. I sense another blog series may be necessary.