Published On: Mon, May 16th, 2016

Matthew de Grood quintuple murder trial begins in connection to Brentwood stabbings

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The Calgary courtroom where Matthew de Grood will be tried on five counts of first-degree murder beginning Monday morning is expected to be so full, a second one has been booked to accommodate the overflow.

The interest in the trial is proportionate to the scope of the grief that gripped the city in the hours, days, weeks and months after the killings.

Lawrence Hong, 27, Joshua Hunter, 23, Kaitlin Perras, 23, Zackariah Rathwell, 21, and Jordan Segura, 22, were all stabbed to death on April 15, 2014, at a home in the northwest community of Brentwood as they celebrated the end of university classes.

Stabbing Five Dead

Matthew de Grood, who is accused of killing five people, is shown following a 10-kilometre race in Calgary in 2013. (Canadian Press)

The accused murderer’s mental state at the time of the slayings is expected to be a big part of the trial.

The Crown must prove that de Grood, 24, is responsible for the deaths. A document detailing some of the facts of the case that are agreed on by both the Crown and defence is expected to be entered as an exhibit at the beginning of the trial.

“There has to be proof that the accused committed the physical acts that constitute the offence that he’s charged with,” said de Grood’s lawyer, Allan Fay. “Until that’s proven by the Crown … we can’t even address the [not criminally responsible] aspect.”

If it is established that de Grood killed the five, the court will then move on to the issue of not criminally responsible (NCR).

If the judge finds that de Grood did not know what he was doing at the time of the killings was wrong, then he will be designated NCR.

“When someone is acting as a result of a mental health problem and is responding to delusions or hallucinations … we don’t assign the same level of criminal responsibility,” said forensic psychologist Patrick Baillie.

“We don’t find that person guilty but we also don’t find them not guilty — we find them not criminally responsible.”

Under Section 16 (1) of Canada’s Criminal Code, a person cannot be found criminally responsible “for an act committed or an omission made while suffering from a mental disorder that rendered the person incapable of appreciating the nature and quality of the act or omission or of knowing it was wrong.”

There are at least three reports that will be included as evidence at the trial containing medical opinions regarding de Grood’s mental state on April 15, 2014.

 

News Source CBC

 

About the Author

Syed Ammar Alavi

- is Lahore (Pakistan) based journalist & writer with 25-year experience in print, wire and broadcast forms of journalism. His major fields of interest are politics, film,tv,sports, climate change and technology

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