Suspect in Sundre McDonald’s murder to submit to mental health test as potential defense

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A Sundre murder suspect has been ordered to undergo mental health tests to determine if he was criminally responsible at the time of the murder (NCR).

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Defense lawyer Pawel Milczarek appeared Monday on behalf of Solaimane Elbettah in Didsbury Provincial Court and asked that his client be sent to the Southern Alberta Forensic Psychiatry Center for an NCR investigation.

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“I would like to request this morning, and I understand that the Crown does not oppose, an evaluation (penal code section) 672.11 NCR for Mr. Elbettah so that we can begin the process for him to get a report,” said Judge Milczarek Harry. Van Harten.

Crown Counsel Alyx Nanji said that he and fellow prosecutor Vince Pingitore agreed that the assessment was justified.

“We are not denying the defense request for a review of the NCR,” Nanji said.

According to the Criminal Code, an accused cannot be held responsible for a criminal offense if it is found that at the time he was suffering from a mental disorder that he could not recognize what he did wrong.

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If Elbettah was found to be NCR, he could not be criminally charged for the crime and would likely be institutionalized until he is found fit to return to society.

Some elements of the attack are not yet public knowledge

Elbettah, 27, is charged with first-degree murder in connection with the July 4 death of 19-year-old Josh Burns, who was found dead at a McDonald’s restaurant in Sundre shortly after midnight. – that night.

The investigators, who did not reveal how Burns died, said that the two men knew each other and it was believed that the attack was planned and deliberate.

Sundre Mayor Richard Warnock called Burns’ death a “horrible tragedy” that could happen in any community, even one as small and close-knit as Sundre.

“A young man is no longer with us and our condolences certainly go to the family and friends of this boy,” he said. “The Police said that there is no risk to the public, but under the same sign it is a terrible tragedy. We will all come together and support each other.”

It is not known if any of the men were employed at the restaurant.

Elbettah is still under arrest and has not requested release from custody in the case.

His matter returns to court on March 27 when he faces a preliminary inquiry.

– with files from Michael Rodriguez

[email protected]

On twitter: @KMartinCourts

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