Due Process

Teen Writer

Andrea Lanthier

One of Ontario's most prominent lawyers, Clayton Ruby, will help to defend a teen accused of threatening classmates.

Ruby confirmed yesterday that he will be among the defence counsel representing the 16-year-old youth charged with uttering death threats after reading a monologue in class.

"I think young people have rights -- constitutional rights -- just as much as adults," said Ruby.

"We wouldn't lock up an adult without a criminal record for up to 30 days -- presumed innocent but held pending bail."

The youth, who cannot be named under the Young Offenders Act, was arrested Dec. 8. He is facing four counts of uttering death threats -- one for threatening to kill students and staff and three more for uttering threats to kill three specific students at the school.

The case, which is to go to trial in Cornwall Jan. 22, is the result of overreaction, said Ruby.

"If they executed a search warrant quietly and they found explosives we'd all say thank you," he said. "But when they find no explosives and then proceed to hold a kid for 30 days, you wonder what on earth are they doing."

The local arts community was also expected to come out in support of the young writer in a demonstration on Parliament Hill this morning.

The Ottawa Sun
Monday, January 15, 2001


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Globe and Mail
January 9,2001

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