It was the opening day of a hearing that would present the evidence police have on accused murderer Kenneth Edward Green.
But halfway through the day, Green decided he wasn’t going to stay.
Suspected murderer Kenneth Edward Green was in provincial court in St. John’s Monday morning for the start of his preliminary inquiry. However, Green was granted permission to not return for afternoon proceedings.
— Photo by Rosie Gillingham/The Telegram
The 35-year-old was led into provincial court Monday morning by sheriff’s officers for his preliminary inquiry, amidst a courtroom full of family and friends of victim Joey Whalen, as well as reporters.
But following the lunch break, Green opted not to return for afternoon proceedings and, instead, was granted permission by the judge to be taken back to Her Majesty’s Penitentiary.
Under law, an accused person is not required to be present for the hearing, which determines whether there’s enough evidence to send the case to trial.
However, it’s necessary to first show up and then ask the judge to be excused.
Green’s lawyer, Randy Piercey, made the request in court, but didn’t give a reason. Nonetheless, Judge Jim Walsh agreed to allow it.
Piercey told The Telegram Monday evening that Green likely won’t be back for the remainder of the hearing, which resumes today and is expected to last at least a week.
Green is charged with second-degree murder in connection to the death of Whalen. The 47-year-old died in hospital on March 17, two days after he was reportedly beaten inside a home on Tessier Place in St. John’s.
Green, of Mount Pearl, was arrested shortly after the incident, having been denied bail in May.
Crown prosecutors Sheldon Steeves and Natalie Payne are expected to call at least a dozen witnesses to the stand, including several police officers.