Kurt Churchill gets conditional discharge for uttering threats against police officer

·2 min read

A St. John's man has been given a conditional discharge after being found guilty of threatening a police officer at the lockup following a late-night dispute on George Street last year.

The decision means no conviction was entered, and Kurt Churchill will not have a criminal record. He will be on probation for 12 months.

Judge David Orr did impose a DNA order on Churchill, requiring him to provide genetic material for inclusion in a Canada-wide police database.

In March 2019, RNC officers were called to George Street around 3 a.m. after receiving reports of a male throwing punches outside the Martini Bar. Bouncers were trying to remove him.

The police took Churchill into custody, and brought him to the drunk tank in the St. John's lockup.

While there, Churchill made abusive comments to police, before telling an RNC officer, "I'm going to put my boot in your f---ing head."

He was charged, and found guilty after a one-day trial in September.

At a sentencing hearing last month, Churchill, 43, said he had no recollection of what happened, and apologized.

While Orr sided with the defence's submission on the nature of the sentence — a conditional discharge — he granted the Crown's request for Churchill to provide a DNA sample.

Home has been searched in homicide probe

Churchill owns a home on Craigmillar Avenue in St. John's that has been the subject of intense police scrutiny in a homicide investigation.

James Cody was found shot to death on the street near Churchill's home this July.

Paul Daly for CBC
Paul Daly for CBC

Police investigators executed search warrants at 40 Craigmillar Ave. and seized a number of items — including four 9-mm bullet casings, DNA swabs from drinking glasses and a beer can, plus gunshot residue swabs.

As CBC News reported last month, those items have been sent off for forensic analysis.

So has a handgun that investigators say may have been used to kill Cody. It was discovered at a property on an adjacent street, located behind 40 Craigmillar Ave.

No charges have been laid in relation to Cody's death, and the RNC has not publicly named any suspects. Police have not confirmed what, if any, connection Churchill has to the homicide.

Both Cody and Churchill have past charges accusing them of links to drug trafficking, in separate cases.

Lawyers for each of them filed successful applications related to unfair trial delays. Churchill was acquitted after the Crown opted to enter no evidence, and Cody's case was tossed after going all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada.

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