Nfld. & Labrador

Lawyer ordered to drop Pynn murder case

Family members of murder suspect Phillip Pynn were ejected from court Monday, while lawyer Averill Baker has been ordered to drop the case.

Angry members of the accused's family ejected from court

Lawyer Averill Baker: 'I have lost one of my most important clients.' (CBC)
Phillip Pynn, 25, in court in St. John's on Aug. 29. ((CBC))
As a part of a tumultuous day in provincial court in St. John's – that saw family members of a man accused of murder ejected from the courthouse – lawyer Averill Baker has been ordered to drop the case of a former client.

Pynn, 25, was charged after Nick Winsor, 20, was shot outside a Portugal Cove Road home in what police said was a botched robbery attempt.

Baker has been Pynn's lawyer for six years. The Crown argued Baker was in a conflict of interest because she had once represented the owner of the home where Winsor was shot.

"This is a sad day," Baker said.

"I have lost one of my most important clients, as I say, he's been with our firm since 2005, and we were the victims of an attack by the Crown," said Baker.

In court, Pynn said he wanted to fire Baker anyway, because he could not access court information while the Crown was trying to have Baker removed from the case.

Pynn told the court he'd have two new lawyers by mid-September.

At one point, Pynn attempted to speak to the judge. Judge Mike Madden asked him several times to stop talking before suggesting he could be "gagged" by sheriff's officers

"The judge essentially blew up at him and threatened to gag him, to have him physically gagged," said Baker.

That upset Pynn's family, including his mother, Loretta, and sister Felicia.

They were asked to leave the courtroom during a recess.

Outside, Felicia Pynn began swearing at sheriff's officers.

She was detained for causing a disturbance and the other members of the Pynn family were ordered out of the courthouse altogether.

Pynn's mother shouted, "Get those cameras out of here" as she left the building.

According to the court order, Baker can't have any involvement with Pynn's murder case, but she can represent him later.

Baker said both she and Pynn may file a civil suit against the Crown, claiming they have been mistreated.