Newspaper article The Canadian Press

No Appeal in Fatal Police Shooting of New Brunswick Store Owner: Prosecutors

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

No Appeal in Fatal Police Shooting of New Brunswick Store Owner: Prosecutors

Article excerpt

No appeal in fatal N.B. police shooting

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FREDERICTON - New Brunswick prosecutors won't attempt to revive manslaughter charges in the police shooting of a businessman.

In a statement released Monday, Public Prosecution Services says it decided not to make further attempts in light of two previous court decisions and after a reassessment of the threshold for prosecution.

Const. Patrick Bulger and Const. Mathieu Boudreau had been charged in the death of Michel Vienneau, a 51-year-old Tracadie, N.B., store owner who was shot in his vehicle outside the Bathurst train station on Jan. 12, 2015.

The officers had each faced charges of manslaughter with a weapon, assault with a weapon and unlawfully pointing a firearm.

"In any prosecution it is the obligation of the prosecutor to reassess the prospect of conviction as a file moves through the prosecution process," says the statement. "A file that initially met the test for prosecution may not continue to meet the test for prosecution as the matter progresses."

The charges were dismissed at a preliminary hearing in February after provincial court Judge Anne Dugas-Horsman ruled that the prosecution failed to produce enough evidence to warrant a trial.

Last month, Court of Queens Bench Judge Tracey DeWare upheld the lower court ruling.

"Based on operational policies and having regard to the provincial court decision and the Court of Queen's Bench decision in this case, Public Prosecution Services will not seek an appeal of the Court of Queen's Bench decision," the service said in Monday's statement.

Bulger and Boudreau, who are Bathurst City Police officers, were charged by the RCMP in November 2015. The Mounties said their investigation revealed that Vienneau was not involved in criminal activity.

A subsequent lawsuit filed by Vienneau's common-law partner, Annick Basque, alleges his death was due to police negligence. …

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