Good morning, Greater Sudbury! Here are a few stories to start your day on this Tuesday morning.
COVID-19 outbreak sweeps through jury in Wright murder trial
The second-degree murder trial of Robert Steven Wright was adjourned again on Monday, March 20, after what is now an outbreak of COVID-19 among the members of the jury. Proceedings have been halted since March 16 after a juror tested positive for COVID-19 and needed to isolate. The other jury members, who had been in close quarters throughout the trial, were told to self-isolate through the weekend. Those who tested positive contacted the courthouse (the exact number of positive jurors was discussed during voir dire and can’t be reported). “You'll notice you’re again down a few members,” said Justice Robbie D. Gordon when the jury entered around 10:40 a.m. “The delay this morning was counsel and I discussing how we can proceed, and what we need is more time.” There might be the chance for the ill jurors to participate again by Zoom, at least through to the completion of evidence, said Gordon. However, he indicated one juror is “not feeling well enough to participate virtually.
Boost in security welcomed by Rumball Terrace residents
The city's roughly doubled municipal law enforcement presence at Greater Sudbury Housing Corporation locations has been well-received by at least two Rumball Terrace residents. “To see a security guard is a great deterrent,” 20-year resident James Dolbeck said, adding that the move will likely save the city money in the end by deterring things such as vandalism. During 2023 budget deliberations last month, city council voted in favour of increasing the number of full-time municipal law enforcement officers at Sudbury Housing’s 16 locations from three (plus four part-timers) to eight total, plus security cameras monitored 24/7 from a security room at 720 Bruce Ave. Though Dolbeck and his partner, two-year resident Patricia Crawford, maintain that in-person, 24/7 security would be preferred at Rumball Terrace, both welcome the prospect of additional roaming security. Rumball Terrace is located at the Four Corners in Sudbury’s South End, and includes two 11-storey buildings at 1960 Paris Street; a 162-unit building for families and a 101-unit building for adults.
Greater Sudbury Police hiring to meet new staffing complement
With city council approving the hiring of an additional 10 police officers and two civilian staff members during 2023 budget deliberations, Greater Sudbury Police Service is now hiring. An update was provided during this week’s Police Service Board meeting, at which the new authorized sworn staffing complement was first posted at 282, alongside a new civilian staffing level of 142. Following the meeting, Chief Paul Pedersen told local media that policing is a competitive field, and that getting new recruits up to snuff doesn’t take place overnight. “It's about 16 months from the point of hire, through training, before those people are able to drive a police car,” he said, adding they’re initially hired as cadetes. As cadets, they undertake three weeks of training before going off to Ontario Police College for 13 weeks of basic training. “If they pass Police College, they get sworn in as constables and through their initial training, and they work with a coach officer for a number of months and after a probationary period they're out on their own and serving the community.
Sudbury schools implement 'Dare to Care’ anti-bullying program
Lansdowne Public School and Valley View Public School have teamed up to deliver an innovative bullying prevention program. Called Dare to Care, the program is currently being piloted by Rainbow District School Board in 12 schools across Sudbury, Espanola and Manitoulin Island. With modules for students, professional learning for staff, and resources for parents/guardians, Dare to Care engages the entire school community to work towards a common goal – transforming the silent majority into the caring majority. “Dare to Care engages the whole school community, which is important in shifting the overall culture of the school,” said director of education Bruce Bourget, in a press release. “We want all schools to be places of learning where students feel safe in warm and welcoming environments. When students have a strong sense of belonging at school, they are ready to achieve their full potential.”
Ramsey Lake Skating Path closed for the season
A sure sign that spring has arrived. The City of Greater Sudbury announced today that the Ramsey Lake Skating Path is now closed for the season. The ongoing mild temperatures are no longer conducive to safe usage of the path. The city has also advised that many outdoor rinks in the city have closed or are in the process of closing. Volunteers and staff will attempt to maintain ice conditions where possible, weather permitting.
G1 driver clocked at more than 170 km/h on MR 55
The Nipissing West OPP report they stopped a G1 driver they allege was travelling at more than 170 kilometres per hour on Municipal Road 55 on March 18. The portion of Municipal Road 55 where the driver was stopped has a posted speed limit of 80 kilometres per hour, meaning the driver was travelling more than 90 kilometres per hour over the speed limit. The driver held a G1 driver's licence and was accompanied with a passenger holding a G2 driver's licence, who had consumed alcohol. As a result of the investigation, the 25-year-old from Espanola was charged with: Drive motor vehicle - perform stunt - excessive speed; Class G1 licence holder - accompanying driver blood alcohol concentration .05 or above, and; Class G1 licence holder - unaccompanied by qualified driver. The accused is scheduled to appear at the Ontario Court of Justice May 2 in Sudbury. The driver was also issued a 30-day driver's licence suspension and the vehicle was impounded for 14 days.
Mild day with a high of -1 for Tuesday
Expect a mainly cloudy start to your Tuesday with the skies clearing late in the morning. The wind will be at 15 km/h, bringing a -22 wind chill in the morning and a -5 wind chill in the afternoon. Today’s high is -1. The UV index today will be four, or moderate. Tonight, the skies will cloud over and the temperature will drop to -6.