Possible resolution in case against man charged in drug raid north of Biggar: Defence

·3 min read

There may be a resolution in the case against a man charged in connection to a police raid north of Biggar last year where an RCMP officer was shot.

Kurt Miller, 39, is facing numerous weapons and drug-related charges. Representing him, Vancouver lawyer Robert Dick appeared in North Battleford Provincial Court by telephone on Feb. 18. Dick told the court that defence has been in discussions with the prosecutor’s office about a possible resolution. He said Miller has charges out of Regina, Saskatoon and North Battleford and defence and Crown may come to a global resolution.

Dick said he has gone over “somewhat copious” amounts of disclosure, adding there are charter and factual issues.

“I have spoken with Mr. Miller on my observations on this matter,” said Dick.

He told the court he has to file a Muirhead Order so Miller can be provided with a copy of disclosure due to the logistics of lawyers from Vancouver representing him.

Disclosure consists of the Crown’s case against the accused and usually includes search warrants, the charging document, details of the offence, audio/video and transcribed witness statements, statements from the accused, expert reports, exhibits, private communication intercept authorizations, evidence, and criminal records of witnesses and the accused.

Judge Daniel O’Hanlon approved Dick’s Muirhead Order request and ordered Miller not to share the disclosure with either the public or the media. In addition, once the case has concluded, Miller must return all disclosure to the Crown prosecutor’s office.

Miller arrested in traffic stop

Regina Police arrested Miller during a traffic stop in May 2020. The next day, Mitch Hutchinson, 49, was arrested on Miller’s rural property 27 kilometres north of Biggar after police obtained a search warrant.

As a result of the traffic stop by Regina Police, Miller was charged with trafficking cocaine and methamphetamine. He was also charged with possession of proceeds of crime under $5,000, possession of a weapon dangerous to the public and breach of probation.

As a result of the rural property search near Biggar in May 2020, Miller was charged with numerous drug-related offences including possession of fentanyl, methamphetamine, cocaine, alazopram (Xanax), gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB), Iysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) for the purpose of trafficking, possessing proceeds of crime over $5,000 and 16 firearms-related charges.

Mitch Hutchinson was inside Miller’s house at the time and charged with several drug trafficking offences, possession of proceeds of crime over $5,000, and 18 firearms-related offences.

During the police search of the rural property - including two out buildings and two vehicles - they seized methamphetamine, fentanyl, GHB, Xanax pills and LSD. They seized weapons including a semi-automatic rifle, a shotgun, a sawed-off double-barrel shotgun, a spent anti-tank weapon, a revolver and body armour. They also found $16,080 in Canadian currency, money counters, eight cell phones, computers, tablets and packaging for drugs.

In July 2020, Hutchinson was sentenced to seven years in prison after he pleaded guilty in Saskatoon Provincial Court. The court heard that Hutchinson mistakenly shot an RCMP officer thinking the officer was a coyote in the bushes surrounding Miller’s house. The Saskatchewan RCMP Federal Serious and Organized Crime Unit had surrounded the rural house in the R.M. of Glenside on May 14, 2020. Hutchinson surrendered shortly after the officer was shot and he was arrested. The officer was treated immediately for minor injuries.

Miller’s trial in North Battleford Provincial Court is tentatively set for May 2021. The matter will be brought before the court again on March 4.

ljoy@glaciermedia.ca

Lisa Joy, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Battlefords Regional News-Optimist