Houseboat trial delayed again

Reinbrecht’s trial, which originally began in early February, has been plagued by delays.

The trial of a man accused of recklessly driving his speedboat into a houseboat on Shuswap Lake, killing the houseboat’s operator, is facing another lengthy delay.

Leon Reinbrecht’s B.C. Supreme Court trial on one count each of criminal negligence causing death and criminal negligence causing bodily harm is slated to resume on May 25.

Ken Brown was killed when the houseboat he was piloting was struck by Reinbrecht’s speedboat just after 11 p.m. on July 3, 2010, following a post-Canada Day fireworks display on Magna Bay.

Reinbrecht’s trial, which originally began in early February, has been plagued by delays.

In its first week, the trial was adjourned for two weeks to allow defence lawyer Joe Doyle more time to review evidence that surfaced shortly before the trial began.

When the trial resumed, it was adjourned for another 10 days to allow lawyers to examine a disc of evidence that had not initially been disclosed by police.

Another two-week break was taken in March due to a scheduling conflict for B.C. Supreme Court Justice Sheri Donegan.

Lawyers hoped the trial would conclude in early April, but Donegan scheduled time until the end of last week for a worst-case scenario.

The Crown closed its case last Wednesday and the first of two defence expert witnesses gave evidence on Thursday and Friday, April 23 and 24.

Donegan is now tied up hearing a separate matter until late May.

To this point, the trial has heard conflicting evidence about the lighting on Brown’s houseboat.

A police witness admitted last week  the houseboat was not properly equipped with lights according to Transport Canada regulations.

Some witnesses have described the houseboat as being fully lit, while others have testified the boat was difficult to see prior to the crash.

 

Salmon Arm Observer

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