Cindy Gladue, 36, was found dead in the bathtub of a west end hotel room four years ago. (Facebook) A leave to appeal has been granted in the case of an Alberta trucker charged with killing an Indigenous woman in an Edmonton motel room.
In 2015, a jury found Bradley Barton not guilty of first-degree murder in the death of Cindy Gladue. The 36-year-old woman was found dead in a bathtub in an Edmonton motel room four years earlier.
Thursday’s decision means Canada’s Supreme Court will review the order for a new trial.
There was anger from coast to coast in 2015 when an Edmonton jury found Barton not guilty in Gladue’s death.
Public outrage led to a series of rallies and a petition with more than 45,000 signatures demanding Alberta’s justice minister appeal the jury’s verdict.
Gladue, a mother of three, was found dead at the Yellowhead Inn in June 2011.
She died from blood loss from a perforation more than 11 centimetres long that went completely through her vaginal wall.
During Barton’s first-degree murder trial, the jury was told she was a sex worker who lost her life after agreeing to have sex with the accused in exchange for $60. Surveillance video shows Cindy Gladue and Bradley Barton leaving Barton’s hotel room. The next night, she would return to his room, where she would later be found dead. (Supplied) The Crown’s theory was that Gladue was incapacitated by alcohol when Barton used a sharp object to cut her vaginal wall, then moved her to the bathtub when she began bleeding heavily.
The defence contended that while Barton caused Gladue’s fatal injury, it was a non-culpable act of homicide. Barton testified the injury was an “accident” from consensual sexual activity.
The Alberta Court of Appeal overturned the not-guilty ruling and ordered a new 1st-degree murder trial in the case last June.
The appeal court decision, released June 30, 2017, said there were flaws in the way the jury was instructed to consider sexual assault offences and the laws relating to consent.
The errors by Queen’s Bench Justice Robert Graesser included erroneous instructions on what use the jury could make of Barton’s conduct after the fact, and failing to instruct the jury properly on the law of sexual assault relating to consent.
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