British Columbia

Abbotsford stabbing suspect Gabriel Klein refuses to speak in court for 3rd time

The 21-year-old man charged with the second-degree murder of an Abbotsford student appeared in a Surrey courtroom today.

21-year-old refuses to co-operate with court proceedings, questions raised about his fitness to stand trial

Gabriel Klein appears in Surrey court in 2016. He is charged in the stabbing death of Letisha Reimer. (CBC)

The man charged in the stabbing death of 13-year-old Letisha Reimer continues to be unresponsive and uncooperative with his own legal counsel and the courts.

In his third court appearance Wednesday, his second of the day, Gabriel Klein again sat wrapped in a blanket and slumped in a wheelchair. He didn't speak on two occasions when addressed directly by the judge.

Klein has also been refusing to speak to assigned counsel, although this afternoon his lawyer did confirm in court that Klein had complained to him about a pain in his left arm.

The lawyer also told the judge Klein was "making gestures that raise questions about his mental health."

The judge has ordered Klein next appear in court Nov. 21 at which time questions about his fitness to stand trail and counsel will be considered.

Klein is accused of second-degree murder in the death of Reimer and is also charged with aggravated assault in the stabbing of Reimer's 14-year-old friend.

He was arrested at Abbotsford Senior Secondary on Nov. 1.

Since being charged, Klein has refused to co-operate with the court process, according to Crown lawyers.

Last week, the Crown said Klein could not attend his first scheduled court appearance because he was being restrained in his cell for his own safety.

Appeared via video conference

On Monday, he first refused to appear at a scheduled video link hearing from jail and was eventually compelled to appear by the judge.

He appeared slumped in a wheelchair, wrapped in a blanket in that instance as well. The judge addressed him three times but Klein refused to answer and was eventually wheeled out.

The Crown has alleged that Klein is intentionally refusing to co-operate to avoid dealing with the legal proceedings.

Crown lawyers also said Klein is no longer certified under the Mental Health Act and is being held in jail, not in a hospital.

With files from Eric Rankin