Preliminary inquiry in murder case set for December

Derek Montague
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Gordon Milley, 30, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Bernice Rich in June.
— Photo by Derek Montaque/TC Media

Those eagerly awaiting the outcome in the case of accused murderer Gordon Milley will have to wait a few months longer, at least.

Due to a busy court schedule in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, a preliminary inquiry in the case of Milley, 30 — who charged with first-degree murder in relation to the death of Bernice Rich in June — cannot proceed until Dec. 16 and 17.

Those dates were set when the case was called in provincial court today.

 In addition to the first-degree murder charge, Milley also faces a sexual assault charge in relation to the incident, as well as three additional charges, including breach of recognizance and public mischief.

During court proceedings today, Milley’s defence attorney — who spoke to the court through the phone system — agreed with the Crown to set aside two days for a preliminary inquiry.

But trying to find two available days in Happy Valley-Goose Bay’s jam-packed court docket turned out to be problematic.

“There’s not a half day available in this court for the rest of the year,” commented Judge William English.

They were eventually able to make Dec. 16 and 17 available.

Crown attorney John Noseworthy at one point suggested the court bring in another judge for the Milley hearing.

English noted, however, that was out of his hands.

“If you want to bring in another judge, you’ll have to go way over my head,” said English.

For the family members of the victim, the slow process of the justice system has been agonizing.

Emma Rich, Bernice Rich’s cousin, said it hasn’t been easy since the tragedy.

“I’m just waiting for justice to be served on behalf of cousin Bernice,” says Emma.

“It gets harder (in court)…I feel exhausted. It makes me miss her more.”

Geographic location: Happy Valley, Goose Bay

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