The Winnipeg Free Press ran an incredible article today that showcased the complete bankruptcy of special interest pleading.
Meet Sydney Teerhuis. This is from a 2003 article
Sydney Teerhuis, 33, has been charged with second-degree murder after he showed up at the downtown Police station to direct them to Greene’s body. Police say Teerhuis, a resident at the Royal Hotel, met Greene at the nearby Woodbine Hotel on Main Street and convinced Greene to come back to his place for sex…..
….Greene was found in the downtown hotel, decapitated, castrated and disemboweled. Sources report that Greene’s arms and legs were also cut off.
Turns out, Teerhuis is Indian. In today’s Free Press story, he his demanding that his jury for the murder trial be a jury of “his peers”, meaning that the majority of them have to be Aboriginal.
To the surprise of absolutely no one, Indians are seldom selected for jury duty due to the fact that people with criminal records cannot be selected. Teerhuis wants this overturned so he can get a jury of Indians.
This is mindboggling for more than the obvious reasons.
There is the fact that Teerhuis, despite being a degenerate sexual psychopath, assumes that a jury of Indians will overlook this and feel pity for him because he’s also Indian. This in turn raises the horrifying notion that he may actually be correct in his assumption. Why else, after all, would he be asking for a predominantly-Indian jury if it wasn’t to try and get some leniency out of his “brudders”? Did he happen to wake up a few months back and decide to become a fighter for justice? Perhaps he always wanted to be a hero, but all those years of casual sex in hotel rooms distracted him?
Second, I would give everything I own to have seen Nahanni Fontaine’s face this morning as she read this. What does she do? Does she step up and lip synch the usual by-rote outrage on a racist justice system and take the side of a monstrous criminal ( in turn, no doubt blaming his barabarism on the legacy of residential schools), or does she take a pass and miss a golden opportunity to once again engage in some race-baiting? Ditto for Chris Henderson and the UofW Another Dead Indian posse.
What’s a pimp to do?
This is the reductio ad absurdum of self-government. That a man who stands accused of slaughtering and violating another human being can express sincere belief in the idea that “his people” will somehow see things differently and perhaps feel compassion for him — despite his confessing to the murder — shows what possible horrors lie in the notion of handing over justice, as well as any other social service, to the kangaroo court of special interest victimhood.
If Teerhuis gets his wish, it will be, in my opinion, the death-knoll of self-goverrnment.
I will be watching this very closely.
Updated by Shere -
Here ya go Rask:
“There are a large number of aboriginal people being excluded from jury selection based on that provision. It does affect the representativeness of the jury,” defence lawyer Kathleen Fotheringham argued in court earlier this month.
Defence lawyer Greg Brodsky is also fighting the motion on Teerhuis’ behalf and claims justice officials have created a system where the only people who are being selected for jury duty are “the elderly and the unemployed”.
“You may be getting a jury which is unbiased, these 70-year-old unemployed people and homemakers, but you’re not going to get a jury that is representative of the community,” said Brodsky.
“The process just doesn’t work.”
Jury co-ordinator Gail Hildebrand was forced to give evidence earlier this month and told court that about 1,600 jury notices were sent out in anticipation of the Teerhuis trial, which was set to begin in early September.
She said the list of names was randomly generated through provincial health records and didn’t know how many people were native.
Hildebrand said more than 1,400 of those who received notices were excused from the panel for various reasons, including health, work duties and other commitments that could affect them financially.
Only 189 people were left — with 13 of those being disqualified for having criminal records. The remaining 176 were expected to come to court next month where Crown and defence lawyers would then select the 12 who would hear the trial.
“The threshold to get off a jury panel is far too low,” said Brodsky, who also took issue with the fact jury officials simply took people at their word and didn’t require written declarations.
“That gives the impression justice isn’t being done and we don’t have procedural fairness.”
Crown attorney Deborah Carlson said there is no evidence anything improper has occurred when dismissing prospective jurors because of perceived hardships.
“The issue here isn’t whether (jury officials) are running the tight ship that Mr. Brodsky would run in determining what is a hardship to a person,” she said.
“There’s no evidence anything untoward has occurred or a panel has not been randomly chosen. The key word here is fairness, not perfection.”
Queen’s Bench Chief Justice Marc Monnin presided over the motion and has reserved his decision, which has forced an indefinite delay of Teerhuis’ trial.
“He doesn’t care if his trial is delayed. He wants a fair trial before a representative jury. If he has to sit and wait for it, he will,” said Brodsky.
He claims the motion is unique in Canada and would have far-reaching implications about the way juries are selected if successful.
Monnin questioned Brodsky in court about the reason so many people are opting out of jury duty.
“Isn’t that partly because the nature of where our criminal trials are going? They’re going to a far greater length. Jurors aren’t just expected to be here for a few days or a week anymore, but for two, three, six months,” he said.
Monnin also said Teerhuis isn’t allowed to hand-pick a jury of his pleasing.
“He’s entitled to have a jury chosen randomly from a group that represents the community as a whole. That doesn’t mean the end result has to be exactly how the community is comprised,” he said.
Teerhuis is accused of dismembering, beheading and castrating Robin Greene, 38, inside the Royal Albert Arms Hotel in the summer of 2003. Police were led to the body after a man walked into the Public Safety Building and allegedly confessed.
Investigators initially believed they were responding to a prank call and were stunned to find the victim inside the bathtub of a hotel suite. Greene, a Shoal Lake resident visiting the city, had been cut into eight pieces.
Police have been unable to locate some internal organs that had been removed from the victim, and their disposition remains a disturbing mystery.
Police also recovered inside the suite a necklace that had been stolen one day earlier from the set of the Hollywood movie, Shall We Dance?, starring Jennifer Lopez, Susan Sarandon and Richard Gere.
The movie was being filmed in Winnipeg. The $4,000 necklace belonged to Sarandon but played no role in the killing in terms of motive, according to police.
The celebrity link to the gruesome case sparked interest in the United States from gossip magazines, tabloid newspapers and entertainment talk shows.
Greene and his alleged killer weren’t known to each other, but apparently met earlier in the night at a downtown city hotel and agreed to return to the hotel for consensual sex.
Jury duty facts
* 10,349 English and 650 French jury summons issued in 2004-05.
* Prospective jurors randomly selected from Manitoba health records.
* Jury selection begins with a group of 48 or more residents from a judicial district, and, under the supervision of a judge of the Court of Queen’s Bench, a 12-member jury is selected.
* The Jury Act prohibits certain individuals from being jurors, including MPs and MLAs, judges, police officers, lawyers and other court officials, correctional and probation officers, persons convicted of an indictable offence or persons afflicted with a mental or physical infirmity that makes if difficult to perform the duties of a juror.
* Potential jurors may also be excused if the length of the trial could create a financial hardship on the individual or his or her family.
RASKY ADDS: Reading this again, I have to wonder if his demand for equality will now make him a hero in the fight for justice?
“Yes, at one time he did murder and disembowel someone….but he’s such a believer in the cause!”
Maybe he’ll be First Perspective ’s Man of the Year for 2006.
Or perhaps get tenure at the UofW’s Ab Studies program?