Mental disorder defense will be raised by suspect in mother’s murder

Content of the article

The Airdrie man charged with murdering his mother in January will schedule a Court of Queen’s Bench hearing to determine whether he was not criminally responsible due to mental disorder, one of his lawyers in court on Thursday.

Content of the article

Defense attorney David Roper told Provincial Court Judge Ken McLeod that Alexander James Thorpe was waiving his right to a preliminary hearing and his case would go directly to the Court of Queen’s Bench.

“My instructions are to waive the preliminary hearing and then settle for incarceration (to stand trial),” Roper said, on behalf of lead defense attorney Balfour Der.

Roper told McLeod they wanted to set a date in the Court of Criminal Court of Queen’s Bench “for the purpose of scheduling an NCR hearing.”

Crown Attorney Jim Sawa did not object to the request, but said he should review Thorpe’s medical records before determining whether the case would go to trial or an NCR hearing.

Content of the article

Sawa noted that Thorpe was found fit to stand trial, meaning he had the ability to understand the court process, but Dr. Ken Hashman conducted an assessment to determine the defendant’s state of mind. at the time of his mother’s death.

A finding of not criminally responsible would require proof that the accused suffered from a mental disorder which rendered him unable to appreciate the nature and quality of the act, or to know that it was wrongful.

McLeod agreed to Roper’s request that the case be referred to the Court of Queen’s Bench.

“At the request of Mr. Thorpe, the preliminary inquiry into this matter is adjourned and there is a consent order to stand trial and the matter will be taken to criminal appearance court to set a date for a hearing. NCR,” the judge said.

Thorpe, 20, is charged with second degree murder in the death of his mother, Melanie Lowen, 48, whose body was found at an Airdrie residence during a welfare check on January 13.

Thorpe, who appeared in court by telephone from the Southern Alberta Forensic Psychiatry Centre, will remain detained there pending his hearing.

He will then be in court on May 27.

[email protected]

Twitter: @KMartinCourts

Comments are closed.