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Killer remains free on bail till May

By Keith Lacey The strike by Ontario government workers has caused a delay in preparing a killer's pre-sentence report. So, Peter Trudeau remains free on bail awaiting sentencing late next month.
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By Keith Lacey

The strike by Ontario government workers has caused a delay in preparing a killer's pre-sentence report. So, Peter Trudeau remains free on bail awaiting sentencing late next month.

The Sudbury teenager faces a penitentiary term for manslaughter. He was scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday after he pleaded guilty in January to killing a Sudbury man outside a Minnow Lake apartment complex last Father's Day.

However, Justice Wayne Cohen agreed to adjourn the sentencing hearing until May 30 after assistant Crown attorney Len Walker told him the OPSEU strike has resulted in a delay in preparation of Trudeau's pre-sentence report.

Probation officers, who conduct all interviews and write pre-sentence reports, are members of OPSEU.

Defence counsel Robert Beckett told Cohen his client and mother have been interviewed and the process is underway to finalize the report, however, more time is needed.

Cohen said while this is a serious matter, Trudeau has no previous criminal record and the pre-sentence report is crucial for any sentencing hearing. He agreed to the seven-week adjournment.

Donald Southwind, 23, was stabbed by Trudeau last June 17 after telling a group of rowdy youths to quiet down as he was putting his children to bed for the evening.

Ronald Maidment, 21, and Trudeau were originally charged with second-degree murder.

On Jan. 18, Maidment, who had been released on bail, pleaded guilty to common assault and was given a one-day jail sentence, time served. Maidment spent three months in pre-trial custody.

Trudeau entered a guilty plea to manslaughter.

Southwind and his family lived in Birkdale Village, the public housing unit on Second Avenue in Minnow Lake.

When Southwind returned home around 10:30 pm after consuming eight beers and some whiskey, he approached a large group of young people he deemed responsible for making noise over several consecutive nights.

When Southwind approached the group, he got into a heated discussion with two young men and a verbal confrontation escalated into violence.

Trudeau, accompanied by his mother, turned himself into police, the next day.





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