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Jurors consider verdict in Derksen trial

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 16/2/2011 (3040 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Jurors have started deliberations in the Candace Derksen case.

Crown and defence lawyers gave them plenty to think about after summarizing the high-profile trial during closing arguments earlier today. Queen’s Bench Justice Glenn Joyal then gave final instructions on the law before they were given the case around 5 p.m. The seven-man, five-woman jury will now remain sequestered until they reach a verdict.

Mark Edward Grant, 47, has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder for the cold-case killing of the 13-year-old girl. Candace was allegedly grabbed off the street Nov. 30, 1984, bound with rope and left to freeze to death inside a brickyard shed. Her body was found in the shed Jan. 17, 1985, following an exhaustive search that included hundreds of volunteers.

Grant was arrested in 2007 after advances in DNA testing allowed for material seized at the scene to be tied to his genetic profile.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 16/2/2011 (3040 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Jurors have started deliberations in the Candace Derksen case.

Crown and defence lawyers gave them plenty to think about after summarizing the high-profile trial during closing arguments earlier today. Queen’s Bench Justice Glenn Joyal then gave final instructions on the law before they were given the case around 5 p.m. The seven-man, five-woman jury will now remain sequestered until they reach a verdict.

Candace Derksen

Candace Derksen

Mark Edward Grant, 47, has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder for the cold-case killing of the 13-year-old girl. Candace was allegedly grabbed off the street Nov. 30, 1984, bound with rope and left to freeze to death inside a brickyard shed. Her body was found in the shed Jan. 17, 1985, following an exhaustive search that included hundreds of volunteers.

Grant was arrested in 2007 after advances in DNA testing allowed for material seized at the scene to be tied to his genetic profile.

Defence lawyer Saul Simmonds began his final statement Wednesday by accusing justice officials of putting "bad science" before a jury. He said police ignored certain evidence that pointed away from Grant, contaminated the original crime scene and mishandled key exhibits such as the twine used to tie Candace up.

"You must have been wondering for weeks where is the evidence, how did we get here?" he told jurors. "This is a case with overwhelming doubt."

He suggested the real killer has never been caught and what really happened to Candace remains an unsolved mystery.

"What happened in that shed? Was it a prank? Was it a game played by some that ended tragically? Was she taken by someone? Those answers we will never know," said Simmonds.

He argued that police "went down every rabbit hole they could" in trying to make the evidence fit against Grant.

"Your responsibility is to protect him from a possible wrongful conviction. He is not the person who did this. His future now rests in your hands," said Simmonds.

Crown attorney Brian Bell told a vastly different story, telling jurors they should have no difficulty finding Grant guilty as charged. He said DNA evidence clearly connects Grant to the slaying, with only a 1 in 50 million chance the genetic profile is from someone else. He said there is no reasonable explanation of how Grant’s DNA could be at the crime scene if he didn’t commit the murder.

"Please don’t speculate on things you don’t know, focus on what you do know," said Bell.
He accused Grant of trying to throw several "red herrings" at jurors to distract them from the truth.

"He hogtied Candace Derksen and left her to die. You’ll come to one conclusion and one conclusion only," said Bell.

Mike McIntyre

Mike McIntyre
Reporter

Mike McIntyre grew up wanting to be a professional wrestler. But when that dream fizzled, he put all his brawn into becoming a professional writer.

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