Crown continues to lay out case against accused murderer

Kingston Police help handcuffed accused murderer Roy D. Snyder into a vehicle for transport back to Quinte Detention Centre, Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022. Photo by Michelle Dorey Forestell.

After a delay on Tuesday, Dec 20, 2022, due to his sudden illness, Roy Douglas Snyder returned to the preliminary hearing of his case before Justice Alison Wheeler on Wednesday, Dec 21, 2022.

Defence attorney Mary Cremer began by updating the judge on Snyder’s health issues, saying, “I am upset to learn that [Mr.Snyder] was kept in cells all day yesterday (Tuesday) until 4 p.m.” She noted Snyder was not examined by medical personnel at Quinte Detention Centre. This was despite the court having been adjourned on Tuesday by 10:30 a.m. to allow medical personnel to assess Snyder, who had been too ill to participate in his own defence. 

On Wednesday, the third day of the hearing, Snyder was offered his coat to keep warm, to which he said, “No thank you, I will be fine.” He was allowed to have water with him in the prisoner dock because he was, according to the defence, “very dehydrated.” He sat quietly, often slumping over with his forearms on his knees and his head bowed. Occasionally he appeared uncomfortable, wiping his face with his hand and breathing heavily.

Snyder stands accused of murdering David Hogdson, a fellow member of the community that has grown up around the Montreal Street Integrated Care Hub, in January 2022.

Like the first day of the preliminary hearing, day three saw three more civilian witnesses who were at the ICH on the night of Hodgson’s killing.

As Assistant Crown Attorney Courtney Cottle attempted to establish the case against Snyder, asking witnesses in a straightforward manner to describe what they saw, some witnesses seemed to become frustrated under Cremer’s cross-examination, which was often extremely repetitive, though friendly in tone.

One witness became so irritated that Justice Wheeler allowed the person to leave for the day before Cremer’s cross-examination was finished. The witness was ordered to return at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 22.

After adjourning for the day and dismissing all of the witnesses, the Judge endorsed a warrant ordering that Snyder be attended to by medical staff upon his return to Quinte Detention Centre and assessed for proper medication to treat his condition.

Thursday, Dec. 22, 2022, day four of the hearing, saw the prompt return of the aforementioned witness who had become overwhelmed.  

The Crown called two more civilian witnesses to testify, and Cremer continued her thorough cross-examination, prompting one witness to quip, “You keep asking the same questions; I can’t give you a different answer.”

After those witnesses had testified, the Crown was finished calling civilian witnesses, and Justice Wheeler adjourned the court for the day to allow people to avoid the quickly approaching storm and the dangerous winter driving conditions predicted to accompany it.

The preliminary hearing is expected to take two more days. Police witnesses will make brief statements and be cross-examined, starting at 10 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 6, 2023. Final submissions to the judge will take place on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2023.

As previously noted, an order under Section 539 of the Criminal Code of Canada bans the publication of evidence given at a preliminary hearing until either the charges against the accused have been dismissed or, if ordered to stand trial, the trial has ended. In cases where a file is transferred from the provincial court to the Supreme Court for the purposes of trial, the ban remains in force until the trial has ended. However, the ban does not apply to any evidence given during the trial.

Kingstonist will continue to provide updated coverage of this case as the hearing continues.

Editorial note: The hearing scheduled for Friday, Dec. 23, 2022, was postponed due to the incoming blizzard.

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