Fortney: Nathan O’Brien’s mother a portrait of courage on witness stand

Courage. It is the all-too-rare human quality that sends soldiers off to fight for their country, activists to stand in peaceful defiance before a wall of gun-toting riot officers. When it appears in a quieter form, its impact can still be so powerful as to take one’s breath away. Such is the effect Jennifer O’Brien has […]

Fortney: Crowded jury selection for triple-murder case follows American style

“Well, this is a different kind of day. The only thing familiar was the train ride downtown.” At just after 11 a.m. Wednesday, the man speaking aloud to no one in particular is well aware he’s far from alone, judging by the bewildered expressions of many others standing with him outside a Calgary courtroom. Like […]

Jim Lutz: Man who shot his mother in an alcoholic-induced psychosis faces sentencing

The city man who shot and killed his mother while experiencing an alcohol-induced psychosis should be sentenced to up to 15 years in a penitentiary, the Crown suggested Friday. Susan Kennedy argued Andrew Douglas Murray’s ongoing alcohol addiction makes him a dangerous individual. The prosecutor told Justice Beth Hughes the father and sister of Murray […]

Jim Lutz: Timothy Rempel maintains innocence claims throughout testimony

Murder suspect Timothy Rempel admitted Wednesday he built the burn barrel in which human remains — believed to be of Ryan Lane — were found. But Rempel insisted the barrel, constructed of three metal rings, was taken from a shed on his Beiseker property and he had nothing to do with it being discovered at […]

Jim Lutz: Murder suspect says she feared for her life

Murder suspect Crystal Crowchild feared for her life and killed a man she’d just had cash-for-sex with in self-defence, her defence counsel told jurors Wednesday. Jim Lutz, in his final submissions at Crowchild’s second-degree murder trial, said his client should be acquitted. “Crystal Crowchild is not guilty of murder, there’s nothing in the evidence before […]

Jim Lutz: Slaying victim’s family irate after verdict against Calgary teen

Family members of a 45-year-old Calgary man who was beaten and stabbed to death after he met some boys at a CTrain stop last year are not satisfied with the manslaughter and robbery convictions for one of the teens handed down on Monday. The sister and uncle of Gabriel Okeynan said outside court they felt the 16-year-old boy, along […]

Jim Lutz: Laura Coward to face trial in 2017 for first-degree murder of daughter, 9

A 49-year-old mother faces a six-week jury trial starting Feb. 21, 2017, in the death of her nine-year-old daughter, whose body was found in a truck on a rural road near Sundre last year. Laura Coward, who was ordered fit to stand trial on Sept. 3 following a four-day preliminary hearing, faces a count of first-degree murder. Crown prosecutor Mac […]

Jim Lutz: Sex charges against Calgary teacher stayed by Crown

The lawyer for a female junior high school teacher, who had been charged with sexual assault and sexual interference against a 15-year-old male student, says his client was “tearful, so happy and so relieved” when the Crown stayed the charges this week. However, Jim Lutz added Thursday that there is a broader implication of the charges being […]