Man charged in pedestrian’s death

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Frank Gale
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Defendant tells judge about his psychiatric problems

Morgan John Taylor of Rose Blanche is escorted by a RCMP officer to provincial court in Stephenville Thursday. — Photo by Frank Gale/The Western Star

STEPHENVILLE —

A Rose Blanche man charged with criminal negligence causing death apologized when he appeared in court in Stephenville Thursday.

“If I hurt someone with my vehicle, I’m terribly sorry. I didn’t mean to do it. I feel terrible,” he said.

Morgan John Taylor, 47, is facing three charges, two of them relating to dangerous driving causing the death of Christopher Farrell, and the other for allegedly uttering threats.

A car struck and killed the 22-year-old Port aux Basques man Wednesday while he was walking on High Street in Port aux Basques.

Taylor appeared in provincial court in Stephenville Thursday morning, where Judge Jacqueline Jenkins read the charges against him, asking him if he understood them, to which he replied, “I do.”

He told the judge he doesn’t drink due to the medication he takes and that he sees a psychiatrist in Stephenville every month. He said he had carbon monoxide poisoning some years ago, which has resulted in a gland not producing serotonin.

The Crown contested his release, and his bail hearing was set over to 2 p.m. Monday.

Jenkins assured Taylor that medical attention would be provided to him up to his next court appearance.

The RCMP in Port aux Basques reported that on Wednesday morning it received a complaint of uttering threats made against an individual from the general area of Rose Blanche/Harbour Le Cou, which is located about 40 kilometres east of Port aux Basques.

Members from the detachment drove to the area to interview a 47-year-old man about the matter. However, police said, the individual saw police and fled in his motor vehicle along a secondary road, heading towards Port aux Basques.

A short police pursuit was called off in the interest of public safety west of Rose Blanche and the RCMP members radioed to other members the description of the vehicle and the driver.

About 40 minutes later, police said, the suspect vehicle was spotted by an RCMP member driving in the opposite direction on High Street in Port aux Basques, and the suspect vehicle sped off as the police officer turned his cruiser around to follow the vehicle.

Farrell was struck before police could get fully turned to follow the suspect vehicle. The RCMP officer on the scene arrested the suspect as he was exiting the vehicle through his vehicle window, police said.

RCMP members were advised by passersby at the time of the arrest that a pedestrian had been hit and was in serious condition near a local business. The RCMP called Emergency Medical Services, and Farrell was pronounced dead a short time later.

The Western Star

Organizations: RCMP

Geographic location: STEPHENVILLE, Rose Blanche, Port aux Basques High Street Port aux Basques.Taylor Port aux Basques.Members Western Star

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