A year later, the final verdicts are in for the murder trial of one of Canada’s most infamous fugitives
B.C.’s chief justice says he believes the jury has made its verdicts in the murder of Robert Clements.
The verdict was delivered after about two hours of deliberation.
The Crown had argued that the 26-year-old Clements was the prime suspect in the killing of a Vancouver woman, but the Crown has maintained the evidence was insufficient to establish that.
The jury was asked to return a verdict of not guilty by reason of insanity.
Clements, of Burnaby, B.K., is a Canadian citizen who has spent most of his life in the United States.
He has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of his girlfriend, a woman named Melissa MacLean.
In his closing arguments, Crown prosecutor Kevin Smith said he did not believe the jury would have found Clements guilty.
“I am not going to prejudge the jury in any way,” Smith said.
Smith also said the Crown had shown “staggering disregard” for the victims and their families, who are still grieving over the death.
When the jury was announced, one juror asked if she could tell a few people how she feels about the case.
I feel like I’ve been through a lot, she said.
She asked if there were any tears, and then, “no.”
She added: “This is not a crime.”
Clement’s lawyer, Paul Houser, has said that Clements did not commit the killing because he was trying to get out of Canada.
Houser said the trial has been extremely difficult.
His client has been in custody for almost three months.
He said he has a lot of questions and concerns about his sanity.
During his trial, Crown lawyers had argued he was delusional, but they were ultimately unable to convince jurors to convict him.
It has taken three years for the court to issue a verdict.
The first trial took place in 2012.
B.C. Supreme Court Justice Susan Brown was not at the courthouse Wednesday but she said she was disappointed in the jury’s decision.
She also said she had no doubt the Crown would win.
A verdict will be a difficult one, Brown said.
Justice Brown has previously described Clements as a “cold, calculating killer.”
“He’s a dangerous person and he will not be released without an appropriate sentence,” Brown said, referring to the maximum penalty of life in prison.
Despite the court’s ruling, the B.S. Supreme Judicial Court will review the verdicts at a later date.