New Brunswick

One of six accused in Moncton fatal shooting found fit to stand trial

One of six men charged with first-degree murder has been found fit to stand trial following an evaluation at the Restigouche Hospital Centre. 

Five co-accused of killing Joedin Leger appeared in Moncton provincial court Monday

Police shown at the scene of a fatal shooting on Logan Lane in Moncton's north end neighbourhood on April 25. Six people are charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of 18-year-old Joedin Leger. (Pascal Raiche-Nogue/Radio-Canada)

One of six men charged with first-degree murder has been found fit to stand trial following an evaluation at the Restigouche Hospital Centre. 

Six face charges in connection with the April 25 shooting death of 18-year-old Joedin Lloyd Leger in Moncton's north end. 

Riley Robert Sheldon Philips, 18, Hayden Joseph James LeBlanc, 18, Hunter Nash England, 20, Jerek John England, 23, and Nicholas Joseph James McAvoy, 24, appeared by phone in Moncton provincial court Monday morning. 

The five are jointly charged with first-degree murder. That means they would be tried together. A sixth under 18 at the time of the alleged crime and is appearing in youth court. 

The five in adult court appeared one by one by phone, starting with Philips. 

Found fit

Philips's defence lawyer Tim Dubé requested in June that his client be sent for a 30-day evaluation of his fitness to stand trial and for any mental disorders.

On Monday, provincial court Judge Brigitte Volpé said Philips had been found fit to stand trial, but that an evaluation of whether he can be held criminally responsible for his actions had not been completed. 

Dubé told Volpé that Philips wants to waive that aspect. The lawyer said he had only received the "first wave" of disclosure of the Crown's evidence and requested a one-month adjournment.

None of the other co-accused requested evaluations. 

Jerek England appeared next and was represented by Saint John lawyer James McConnell. McConnell told the judge he hasn't received disclosure of the evidence yet. 

RCMP have said they were called to a report of shots fired outside a Logan Lane duplex on April 25. (Pierre Fournier/CBC)

Hunter England, Jerek's younger brother, was the third to appear and is represented by lawyer Gilles Lemieux. 

Lemieux told the judge his client will be requesting a preliminary hearing. 

"To be clear there will be a plea of not guilty," Lemieux said. 

Lawyer Wanda Severns said she expects to be appointed as the lawyer representing McAvoy and hopes to have that confirmed by next month. 

The fifth to appear was LeBlanc, who told the judge he has applied to legal aid but has yet to get a response. 

Volpé urged him to contact legal aid again. She set a court date on Friday afternoon for him to appear again to confirm whether he has a lawyer in place.

Case adjourned to next month

All five remain in custody with the next appearances set for Aug. 25. 

The sixth man, who was a youth at the time of the alleged crime and therefore cannot be named, is charged separately. 

He appeared by video in youth court last Thursday for what was scheduled to be a bail hearing. 

Defence lawyer Jason Dempsey said they would waive that hearing and he wanted to meet the man to discuss options before returning to court. That case returns to court Aug. 5.

RCMP have previously said police were called around 6:10 a.m. for a report of shots fired outside a Logan Lane duplex in Moncton's north end neighbourhood.

Leger had been shot and was taken to hospital, where he later died. RCMP have said another person was inside the home but wasn't injured. 

Police said they determined a car had pulled up to the home, four people got out and approached the house. "Several shots" were fired, police said in a news release, before the four got back into a vehicle and fled the area.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Shane Magee

Reporter

Shane Magee is a Moncton-based reporter for CBC. He can be reached at shane.magee@cbc.ca.

now