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Craig Pope murder trial starts today in St. John's

Accused murderer Craig Pope sits in the dock in Courtroom No. 1 at Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court in St. John's Monday morning as the jury is chosen for his trial, which is set to start today (faces of potential jurors obscured by The Telegram).
Accused murderer Craig Pope sits in the dock in Courtroom No. 1 at Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court in St. John's Monday morning as the jury is chosen for his trial, which is set to start today (faces of potential jurors obscured by The Telegram). - Tara Bradbury

Jury selected Monday to determine fate of accused in stabbing death of Jonathan Collins

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. —

With a jury selected in two short hours Monday morning, the murder trial of Craig Pope will begin in Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court in St. John's today.

Jonathan Collins, 36, died after being stabbed in St. John's in September 2017. Craig Pope is charged with his murder. Collins' family members say they will remember him as a kind-hearted father, brother and son with a big smile and matching spirit.
Jonathan Collins, 36, died after being stabbed in St. John's in September 2017. Craig Pope is charged with his murder. Collins' family members say they will remember him as a kind-hearted father, brother and son with a big smile and matching spirit.

Pope, 33, pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder in the stabbing death of Jonathan Collins, 37, on a St. John’s street in September 2017.

Police said they were called to the Alderberry Lane and Mundy Pond Road area in the centre-west end of the city around 3:30 p.m. on Sept. 7, 2017 with a report that a man had been stabbed on the street. Collins was unconscious and rushed to hospital, but later died of his injuries.

Police and some witnesses said the man who stabbed Collins left the area in a taxi. Pope was arrested a short time later on Elizabeth Avenue.

Police have said the two men knew each other.

Pope has been in custody since his arrest that day, and was denied bail after a hearing in Supreme Court a year ago.

Collins has been described by his family members - who were present for the jury selection Monday -as a kind-hearted father, brother and son, whom they'll remember for his smile and spirit.

Justice Vikas Khaladkar oversaw the jury selection, and will preside over the trial, which is expected to last a month.

Pope is represented by lawyers Randy Piercey and Jon Noonan. Prosecutors Shawn Patten and Jude Hall are expected to give their opening statements once the trial begins this morning.


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