Crown Wants Cameras in Court for Riot Trials

Eight People Making First Appearances Today

Erin Loxam/Amelia John 2011/12/14

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) - The Crown says it plans to make an application to broadcast the court proceedings of those accused in taking part in the Stanley Cup Riot. This backs up Premier Christy Clark's promise from a throne speech earlier this year. It's unknown how many of the suspects it could affect if implemented.

The eight people accused of taking part in the riot make their first court appearances today. Ryan Dickinson was the first in court. His charges include participating in a riot and mischief over $5,000. He was in court by video today will be back again on Friday, though the trial won't happen until in the new year.

Dickinson has been in jail since Thursday for breaching probation dealing with an assault and robbery from 2010.

Later today, Sophie LaBoissonniere, the Miss Congeniality winner at the Miss Coastal Vancouver Pageant, will also be in court. Oliver Burke, Spencer Kirkwood, Robert Snelgrove, Anthony Larsen, Matthew Lennox, and Jeffrey Post will also make their first appearances.

News1130 legal analyst Michael Shapray says there will be a range of sentences for those eventually convicted of taking part in the riot, but it'll really come down to how involved they were.

"[For the] people who were behind the riot [it's] going to be much harsher than for people who may have got caught up," he explains.

He tells us there are a lot of people out there demanding a pound of flesh. "People should simply sit back and put some faith in the criminal justice system. Wait to see what the results are."

Shapray adds normally, first appearances can be a rather dull affair. "There's obviously going to be a lot of attention on them and maybe members of the public there, but it may be somewhat anti-climactic in terms of what happens in court,"

Generally, prosecutors give information and the case will be put over for a period of time. With so much public fascination and emotion involved, he expects some people might be disappointed with the eventual sentences.

"The judges will give sentences based on the type of person in front of them and the nature of their role," he notes.