Accused in high-school stabbing has right to stay mute, refuse counsel: lawyer - InfoNews

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Accused in high-school stabbing has right to stay mute, refuse counsel: lawyer

This photo from the RCMP's Integrated Homicide Investigation Team's Twitter feed shows Gabriel Klein taken just hours prior to the Abbotsford Senior Secondary attack. A British Columbia judge says the case against the man accused of stabbing two girls at an Abbotsford high school last week will move ahead, despite the man's silence.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Twitter-@HomicideTeam
November 10, 2016 - 6:00 AM

SURREY, B.C. - A British Columbia judge says the case against the man accused of stabbing two girls at an Abbotsford high school last week will move ahead, despite the man's silence.

The court has heard that 21-year-old Gabriel Klein has refused to speak with counsel or engage in any way with the legal system since he was taken into custody on Nov. 1.

Crown lawyer Rob Macgowan says Klein ignored at least two attempts by duty counsel to communicate with him, adding that Klein has a right to stay mute and refuse counsel.

Klein faces one charge each of second-degree murder and aggravated assault linked to what police have said was a random attack that killed 13-year-old Letisha Reimer and injured another female student.

He arrived in court Wednesday morning in a wheelchair and covered in a blanket, rocking back and forth throughout the 10-minute appearance and refused to respond to repeated questions from the judge.

Neither the Crown lawyer nor Klein's duty counsel have asked for a fitness assessment to determine if the man is fit to stand trial.

Provincial court Judge Richard Miller said there appears to be no alternative but to send the matter to B.C. Supreme Court to fix a trial date, though he stood down the court to allow Klein one more chance to speak a lawyer.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2016
The Canadian Press

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