Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
Posted: 11/25/2013 2:01 PM
Canada's highest court will be asked to weigh in on whether Mark Edward Grant should get a new trial in the 1984 killing of schoolgirl Candace Derksen — as Manitoba's Court of Appeal recently ruled he must.
Prosecutors will seek leave from the Supreme Court of Canada to appeal a recent bombshell ruling from Manitoba's top court ordering Grant to be retried on a second-degree murder charge.
Grant, 50, learned Oct. 30 that his conviction for second-degree murder for the 1984 death of 13-year-old Candace Derksen was overturned by Manitoba's Court of Appeal.
The court ruled he was not afforded the right to make a full defence.
Grant's trial judge barred his lawyers from presenting evidence of a police investigation eerily similar to the Derksen probe taking place months after Derksen died and at a time when Grant was already in custody on an unrelated matter.
The Crown must now prove they have a case to make to the Supreme Court by arguing the Manitoba court's decision to order new trial was wrong in law.
The court must first grant leave to the Crown, deeming the case to be of "national importance" and worthy of being heard by a full nine-member court panel. If it does, it will open the door to a full hearing which likely won't take place for some time.
The Derksen family was notified late last week of the Crown's decision in the case, a Manitoba Prosecutions Service spokeswoman said Monday.
A jury convicted Grant in early 2011 following a lengthy and complex trial.
The Crown's case hinged on DNA evidence allegedly linking him to twine used to bind Derksen, who went missing after school Nov. 30, 1984, and was found weeks later frozen to death in a rarely used machinery shed in a brickyard near the Nairn Avenue overpass.
Grant was arrested 2007 after cold-case homicide investigators reopened the file and had DNA tested at a private lab in Thunder Bay, Ont. He has been in custody ever since.
It is open to him to make a bail application, but has yet to signal he will. He has been returned to Manitoba, court records show.
Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories? Please use the form below and let us know.
Having problems with the form?Contact Us Directly
NHL trade deadline: Is the Jets GM done?
Odds are, U of T prof knows the answer
Few companies offer daycare services for staff, despite benefits
Driver badly hurt in rollover in Elmwood
Los Angeles police kill man in struggle captured on video
Men in Dalhousie Facebook group apologize
What's missing is action
Two U of W Wesmen wrestlers honoured as school's players of the week
Doctor recalls era of measles before vaccine
Costco strikes credit card deal with Citi, Visa
Beyond big-box: Transition away from mega-stores bodes well for urban landscape
Brier victory good as gold
Warmer, but windy in the 'Peg today
Just for the record, vinyl's in
Leadership as popularity contest
Pollution documentary attracts huge interest in China
Buffett declines to clarify plan to eventually replace him
NASA spacecraft nearing its second stop - dwarf planet Ceres
Next Google Maps adventure: Soaring through Amazon jungle
'Once in a lifetime' Canada Games come to a close
Iraq launches operation to retake Tikrit from Islamic State
The Nasdaq composite index, then and now
Video reports conflict in probe of Putin critic's slaying
Kerry, Russian FM meet in Geneva as Ukraine tensions simmer
Saudi diplomat taken by al-Qaida in Yemen free after 3 years
UN rights office: Death toll in eastern Ukraine passes 6,000