Port Alberni nurse killer sentencing delayed

The sentencing of the man who was convicted of killing a Port Alberni nurse will take longer than expected.

The sentencing of the man who was convicted of killing a Port Alberni nurse will take longer than expected.

In Port Alberni Supreme Court, Justice McKinnon was poised to render a sentence to Kim Winslow Rothgordt, who last week was found guilty of second degree murder in the 2008 killing of James Shannon.

But in a surprise announcement, defense attorney Ray Dieno told the court that Rothgordt discharged him as legal counsel, and that he was no longer acting on Rothgordt’s behalf.

Dieno advised that an adjournment be sought because of Rothgordt’s mental state.

“He’s suffering from mental health issues today,” Dieno said.

Rothgordt had attempted to commit suicide three times since the trial started.

“There’s a very real possibility that it will happen again,” Dieno said.

Provincial prosecutor Gordon Baines apprised the court that the prosecution was ready to proceed with the sentencing.

Justice McKinnon asked Dieno if Rothgordt was not mentally competent enough to make a decision today.

Dieno replied that this was correct.

The only issue to be decided was that of parole, as a second degree murder conviction carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison.

The judge was to decide at what point Rothgordt would be eligible for parole.

But citing “an abundance of caution”, McKinnon consented to a two-month adjournment to allow Rothgordt to consult with new counsel.

“I very much regret this but I see no other way of doing this,” McKinnon said.

Wearing a blue t-shirt and blue pants, the strapping Rothgordt stood stoically in the prisoner’s box with his arms folded in front of him during the proceeding.

In a quavering tone of voice that belied his stern demeanor Rothgordt told the court “I’m not trying to delay the inevitable,” and admitted that he wasn’t in a position to make a decision.

Outside the courtroom Baines said that Rothgordt’s move was an unusual one, but that justice will be served.

There are no parameters on the time it takes to find a new counsel and fix a new date for sentencing, Baines said.

Nevertheless “Crown will insist on the earliest possible date.”

“This is a delay in justice being done,” he added.

“But it’s not going to affect the time he ultimately serves in prison.”

Rothgordt’s next court appearance is March 21.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Just Posted

West Coast Hockey Prep Camp draws nearly 1,000 players to Port Alberni

History-making Korean hockey coach joins league of celebrity instructors

Port Alberni co-ops targeted in different crimes

One break-and-enter, one case of graffiti at each gas station

Offroad racing happening at Alberni Motorsports Park July 21–22

Last mud truck event until September on the Port Alberni track

Lease agreement signed for Port Alberni oil spill response base

25-year lease agreement is part of a larger expansion plan

Cherry Creek sets water restrictions for summer 2018

Stage One water restrictions are in effect immediately

BC Games: Dance, spoken-word highlights at Opening Ceremony in Cowichan

Hundreds of athletes and thousands of volunteers, coaches, parents and officials

Trump slams Federal Reserve rate hikes

Fed raised benchmark rate for a second time this year in June, and projects two more hikes to come

Okanagan Wildfires: The latest on wildfires and evacuations

A Friday morning look at the major wildfires impact the Okanagan and Similkameen.

UPDATED: 1,500 residents on evacuation alert as Peachland under state of emergency

The Mount Eneas wildfire has forced an evacuation alert of 596 properties

Police to provide update on case against alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur

McArthur worked as a landscaper, allegedly concealed the remains of seven men in planters

Premiers to wrap up 2 days of meetings at New Brunswick seaside resort

Meetings held in the scenic seaside town of St. Andrews on Thursday focused on trade

B.C. city wants pot banned from ALR

Mayor and council are concerned about conversion from growing food to making marijuana

World’s translators push back on forcing Trump interpreter to testify

Democrats had asked translator to testify about Trump’s lengthy conversation with Putin in Helsinki

No decision on B.C. school stabbing suspect’s mental fitness for trial

The BC Review Board could not determine whether Gabriel Klein, 21, is fit to stand trial

Most Read