A former St. John’s journalist charged with child luring has pleaded not guilty.
Kevin Kelly, 41, wasn’t in provincial court when his case was called this morning. He was represented by his lawyer, Mike King, who entered the plea on his client’s behalf.
However, before setting a trial date, lawyers must first deal with King’s Charter of Rights application.
He and Crown prosecutor Shawn Patten agreed to schedule the hearing to argue the application for next month. The three-day hearing is set to begin Nov. 25.
King didn’t say in today’s proceedings what the application was regarding. However, when the case was last in court in July, King said he would be filing the charter application claiming the destruction of evidence by investigators prevents him from presenting a full defence.
At that time, he said that he cannot independently assess the investigator’s report on the contents of the computer’s hard drive because the replica hard drive used to prepare it has been destroyed.
Patten had said in court that the Crown expects it can still obtain a conviction in the case.
Kelly — who is not in custody — was charged late last year with unlawfully luring a child younger than 16 by means of a computer.
He was arrested for reportedly sending a teenage girl inappropriate messages over a five-week period.
Kelly is a former senior editor with the Newfoundland Herald. He often wrote about the province’s arts and entertainment scene.