September 24, 2015 - 2:54 PM
PENTICTON - The original charges laid by a jury last April in the murder trial of John Ike Koopmans will stand.
Defence lawyer Don Skogstad’s application for a mistrial on the count of attempted murder in the John Koopmans murder trial was denied in court this morning.
Skogstad based his application on reasoning the jury was not given choices prior to their deliberation as to whether John Koopmans was guilty of attempted murder or a lesser charge, in the wounding of Bradley Martin.
Koopmans was found guilty by a jury last April, of two counts of second degree murder and one count of attempted murder in the deaths of Rose Fox and Keith Wharton on March 30, 2013, near Princeton.
Skogstad reasoned the jury was provided with alternatives to the murder charges, in providing opportunities for the jury to find Koopmans guilty of first, second or third degree murder, but in the attempted murder charge, no other opportunity was presented to the jury to find Koopmans guilty of a lesser charge such as assault, or unlawfully causing bodily harm.
Skogstad described Martin’s shooting as an attempt to disable him rather than kill him. He said Koopmans had no motivation to harm Martin, and could easily have killed him that night had he wished, describing Martin’s wound as “not immediately lethal like a gunshot wound to the head or heart.”
Justice Miriam Maisonville disagreed with the defence lawyer's reasoning, turning down the application.
Penticton Supreme Court reconvenes tomorrow for Kooopmans' sentencing hearing, where it is expected both counsel will begin their submissions to Justice Maisonville.
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