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Man accused in prison stabbing to represent himself in St. John's court

Justin Jordan, suspected of stabbing a man earlier this week in St. John’s, was back in provincial court in St. John’s Friday.
Justin Jordan. - Rosie Mullaley file photo/The Telegram

Justin Jordan will argue an application to withdraw his guilty plea later this month

The man accused of trying to kill a fellow inmate in prison fired his Legal Aid lawyer Monday, but it didn’t really matter, because she had already sent him a notice saying his Legal Aid certificate had been cancelled.
Justin Jordan plans to represent himself on an application to withdraw the guilty plea he entered in October 2017 to a charge of stabbing accused murderer Trent Butt.
“My lawyers don’t seem to want to listen,” Jordan told Judge Jacqueline Brazil, explaining he had been asking to go to trial on the matter.

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“I understand you want to have your say, but I’m concerned because you are not a lawyer and may not understand the complexities of an application like this,” Brazil told him.
“I respect that, but I’m telling my lawyer what I want to do, and she won’t do it,” Jordan replied. “What else am I supposed to do?”
The court had been set to hear the application in April, but defence lawyer Jennifer Curran expressed concerns with Jordan’s health and asked for a psychiatric assessment. Judge David Orr declined, saying Jordan had already been assessed twice and had been deemed fit for trial. Curran asked for more time to try to get further instructions from her client.
Jordan, 25, has caused concern with his behaviour and outbursts during previous court appearances. At one point, he gave the judge the middle finger and demanded she stand up.
In April, Jordan told the judge that he didn’t believe he was fit for trial, having been taken off his medication in prison.
On Monday, Brazil told Jordan that he would have to file a formal application to change his plea.
“I understand. That’s fine,” Jordan replied.
Brazil will hear arguments from Jordan and prosecutor Jason House on June 22.
Jordan is alleged to have stabbed Butt — who is awaiting a first-degree murder trial in connection with the death of his five-year-old daughter, Quinn — during a recreation period at Her Majesty’s Penitentiary a year ago. Butt was not seriously injured. As he was escorted into court for his first appearance on that matter, Jordan told reporters, “Put your hands in the air for Baby Quinn.”

Twitter: @tara_bradbury

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