January 25, 2011
Manslaughter Charges for Defending Property From Cocaine-Crazed Derelict
Posted by Dave Blount at January 25, 2011 4:06 PM
If you're in Canada and you find a drug-addled vagrant breaking into your car, maybe you'd better just hand him the keys. Don't defend your property — unless you want to wind up in prison:
A 22-year-old college student faces a manslaughter trial after punching a homeless drug addict who was trying to get into his car, a case that highlights the limits of how far people can go to protect their property.
The trial for Mark Curtis, which began Monday, deals with the death of Robert William Hiel, a 47-year-old sometime resident of a downtown Windsor Salvation Army centre who, the Crown prosecutor told a Superior Court, was just checking parked cars for unlocked doors to steal a bit of change when he was struck with a fatal blow.
Assistant Crown attorney Jennifer Holmes told the court that Mr. Curtis and a female friend were parked in the alley at 1:30 a.m. on April 16, 2008 after being out at a nightclub when they spotted Mr. Hiel walking down a row of cars. Mr. Hiel pulled open the door to Mr. Curtis's car and exchanged words with his friend. The two got into an argument and Mr. Curtis accused the man of trying to break into his car. Mr. Curtis punched Mr. Hiel, Ms. Holmes told the court, a fact that the defence does not dispute. …
Mr. Hiel "battled substance abuse," Ms. Holmes said. His blood and urine showed he had used cocaine in the hours before his death. He wasn't breaking into vehicles or intending to cause damage, she told the court.
"He was looking for spare change to get high," she said.
Oh, that's all right then. So long as the burglary was for a good cause.
Don't call Hiel a drug fiend. He was a noble victim, valiantly battling substance abuse. Maybe after the moonbat establishment avenges his memory, they'll erect a statue.
On a tip from Jander.