Suspects often agree to enter into peace bonds during negotiations with prosecutors so that they can avoid charges and a possible criminal record.
However, Ms. Samra’s lawyer Robert Mulligan, QC indicated today that his client has not reached a deal with the Crown.
He said he will ask for an adjournment of the hearing so that he can assess all the relevant police reports and statements and review them with Ms. Samra. (Update on March 23: The hearing has been rescheduled to Tuesday, April 10 at 9:00am.)
Mr. Mulligan said he will then consult special prosecutor Michael Klein before deciding how to proceed.
Mr. Klein is a Vancouver lawyer in private practice who was appointed in February to handle the government’s case because it involves government officials and politicians.
If Ms. Samra is ordered to enter into the peace bond, she will likely be unable to return to work at the city. She is currently on leave with full pay pending the outcome of an internal workplace investigation.
The court application lists nine people who have reasonable grounds to fear that Ms. Samra will cause personal injury to them.
They are: mayor Bill McKay, councillors Dianne Brennan and Sheryl Armstrong, city staff members Sheila Gurrie, Jan Kemp and Donna Stennes, former staff Brad McRae and Kim Fowler, and this reporter.
Samra currently subject to RCMP undertaking
A trained lawyer herself, Ms. Samra, 49, was arrested on the night of Jan. 31 on allegations of uttering threats earlier in the day during an incident at City Hall.
She was released by RCMP on an undertaking that prohibits her from communicating directly or indirectly with the named individuals. She is also barred from going within 100 meters of City Hall and cannot possess any weapons, lighters, incendiary devices, or knives except for preparing food and eating a meal.
Ms. Samra has not been formally charged with uttering threats or any another crime. The hearing on Tuesday is to determine whether there are reasonable grounds to order her to enter into a recognizance, likely with similar conditions to her current RCMP release undertaking.
The hearing’s evidence will be weighed on the lower standards of proof that apply in civil proceedings rather than beyond reasonable doubt that applies in criminal cases. That means it’s typically easier for the prosecution to win a peace bond hearing than secure a criminal conviction.
A person bound by a peace bond is not convicted of an offence and will not have a criminal record.