Murder trial continues as judge rules Colin John fit to stand trial

The murder trial for Colin John will continue at the Duncan courthouse after Justice Lisa Warren declared on Nov. 28 that he has been found fit to stand trial.

The trial for John, accused of killing a Chemainus man in 2016, came to a halt on Nov. 22 after Warren ordered that he undergo a psychiatric assessment.

RELATED STORY: MURDER TRIAL OF CHEMAINUS MAN HALTED PENDING PSYCH REPORT

While being transported from the jail in Victoria to the Duncan courthouse on that day, John began banging his head against the steel cage in the transport vehicle and was in a catatonic state when he arrived at the courthouse.

John kept his head bowed during the court proceedings on Wednesday and appeared to show little, if any, interest in what was being said during the trial, but did rise as is mandatory when the judge entered and left the room.

John is accused of the May 2016 murder of Derek Descoteau, who died of stab wounds at a residence on Caswell Street in Chemainus.

RELATED STORY: JOHN PLEADS NOT GUILTY

He is also facing an attempted murder charge relating to a knife attack on Descoteau’s girlfriend, Janelle Guyatt who suffered serious injuries.

Guyatt was hospitalized for more than two weeks and faces another surgical procedure in order to repair damage to an arm.

The trial began on Nov. 19 in Duncan Supreme Court and six witnesses have taken the stand so far in the trial that was scheduled to last three weeks.

Another eight people are on the witness list.

An RCMP officer who attended the murder scene took the stand on Wednesday and showed pictures of the suspected murder weapon, a buck knife, as well as an unloaded 22-calibre handgun along with a silencer that was found in the home where the attack occurred.

Police also seized two additional handguns from the residence next door to the murder scene, where John lived.

They are a semi-automatic Ruger pistol, and and an antique-style Luger handgun.

Both were loaded when they were seized.

The trial is expected to continue on Nov. 29.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

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