Preliminary inquiry yet to be set for men accused in Lawrence death

Kirk Starratt
Published on July 23, 2014

Security was once again tight as one of the men charged with first-degree murder in the death of Harley Lawrence appeared in Kentville provincial court on July 23. Everyone entering the court had to empty pockets and walk through a metal detector. 

©Kirk Starratt

Two men charged with the first-degree murder of Harley Lawrence will have to wait until September before preliminary inquiry dates are set.

Kyle David James Fredericks, 25, of North Kentville, and Daniel Wayne Surette, 26, of Waterville, are accused of murdering Lawrence, a homeless man who died in a bus shelter fire in Berwick on Oct. 23, 2013.

Security was tight as Fredericks appeared in Kentville provincial court on July 23. Everyone entering the court was subject to a search.

Public defender Ken Greer, who is representing Surette, said his client was not present, as Greer was prepared to file a designation of counsel to appear on his behalf.

Crown Bill Ferguson said a promise to file designation isn’t the same as having one on file. However, he didn’t object, as Greer is in a position to file the designation and Greer’s client “isn’t going anywhere.”

Defence attorney Geoff Newton, who is representing Fredericks, said he proposed that they return to court on Sept. 4 to identify dates for a preliminary inquiry.

Judge John MacDougall suggested that the attorneys contact court staff to try to identify suitable dates in advance of the Sept. 4 appearance. Newton said they had some discussion with court staff that morning.

Judge Alan Tufts said in June that the hearing dates would probably be sometime in February.