Michelle Hanson, an Amaranth mother charged in relation to the death of her three-year old son Kaden Young, will now not face trial until 2022.
Hanson appeared in Orangeville court via Zoom briefly on Monday (Sept. 13), where a date for the start of her trial was expected to be determined. While the trial was expected to take place in Kitchener this fall, Justice Giselle Miller informed the court there were no longer dates available.
“I heard from the regional senior justice in Kitchener, who told me this morning that they no longer have dates this fall,” said Miller. “We would be looking at setting a trial date sometime in 2022.”
Part of the delay in scheduling a trial is due to Hanson not yet retaining a new lawyer, despite having a potential one lined up. Hanson told the court on Monday, that the lawyer she hopes to retain wants to see transcripts from the preliminary hearing.
“He wants the transcripts from it before he makes a final decision,” said Hanson.
Danielle Garbaty, assistant Crown attorney, noted she had received a request for a synopsis and a specific transcript from the preliminary inquiry relating to a witness, and was able to provide the synopsis but not the transcript.
“I spoke to my head Crown, and we were unable to provide that at this point until he’s retained. But, I haven’t heard back from him since,” said Garbaty.
Hanson said when she spoke with her lawyer, he wanted her to get permission from Justice Miller to read over the transcript, which Miller agreed to.
“If there’s a court copy, I would certainly make it available, if the Crown cannot,” said Miller.
Before remanding Hanson, Miller noted the longer it takes for a lawyer to confirm they will be representing the further out the trial date will likely be, as other cases take dates.
Hanson was remanded to appear in court again on Sept. 27 at 9:30 a.m.
“I’m really hoping he will be with you at that time or that he is at the very least able to provide you with his availability for 2022,” said Miller.
Hanson’s trial was originally scheduled to begin in a Guelph courtroom in March of 2020, but was delayed with jury trials on hold in Ontario. In June, Hanson’s former lawyer Marco Forte requested to remove himself as her counsel.
On the early morning hours of Feb. 21, 2018 the minivan Hanson was driving was pulled into the Grand River following heavy flooding, which saw the river water rise up onto the road. Both Hanson and Kaden, who was in the vehicle with his mother, managed to escape but Kaden was pulled away by the water. Kaden’s body was later recovered under a bridge in Belwood Lake on April 21, two months to the day from the incident.
Hanson is being tried on charges of impaired driving causing death and criminal negligence causing death.
Paula Brown, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shelburne Free Press