A Yarmouth man who kidnapped and sexually assaulted two women is in legal limbo after the 60 days scheduled for his psychiatric assessment passed without an interview from health professionals.
Gordon Frank Nickerson, 35, admitted to abducting a woman and her daughter from their home in Wedgeport on Feb. 29. He drove them to New Minas, where they escaped just before he crashed the stolen car.
In April, he pleaded guilty to all 12 charges against him.
After his last court appearance on April 30, Nickerson was sent to the East Coast Forensic Hospital in Dartmouth for a 60-day psychiatric assessment prior to a dangerous offender hearing.
Judge Alan Tufts was to decide Monday whether there was enough evidence to hold a dangerous offender hearing for Nickerson at Kentville provincial court.
Instead, Ken Greer — Nickerson's defence lawyer — told the court that in the two months since his client's last court appearance, no one from the East Coast Forensic Hospital had done the assessment.
While the Crown argued for a new, nine-day psychiatric assessment, Greer said it would not be enough time for a fair hearing.
"Well, I don't see that as being in my client's interest, for sure," Greer said. "That's why we don't want to be seen to be riding these time lines very hard, because I think we want to be able to give the forensic unit enough time to do its job."
Crown Prosecutor Bob Morrison said he hasn't received an assessment and doesn't know when an assessment on Nickerson will be completed.
"Well, we were hoping for some indication of when the assessment report by the forensic unit was going to be done. We don't have that," he said, "And so the judge put it over for a short period to get an update on when we might expect that report to come."
Both lawyers said they've never encountered this situation and they'll be doing research between now and July 4 to try to figure out how to move the case forward.
Capital Health admits the assessment hasn't started but is offering no further comment.