Village Mall Walk-in-clinic employees, front row, and health-care workers attend a vigil for Dr. Walter Reynolds who was killed at a walk-in clinic earlier this week, in Red Deer, Alta., Friday, Aug. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Village Mall Walk-in-clinic employees, front row, and health-care workers attend a vigil for Dr. Walter Reynolds who was killed at a walk-in clinic earlier this week, in Red Deer, Alta., Friday, Aug. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Wants to be own lawyer: Trial date to be set for suspect in slaying of Alberta doctor

Deng Mabiour, 54, is charged with first-degree murder in the slaying last summer of Dr. Walter Reynolds

A trial date is expected to be set today for a man who wants to act as his own lawyer when he is tried in the killing of a family doctor at a medical clinic in central Alberta.

Deng Mabiour, 54, is charged with first-degree murder in the slaying last summer of Dr. Walter Reynolds at the Village Mall Walk-In Clinic in Red Deer.

Mabiour has said he intends to act as his own lawyer. At his last court appearance in December, despite a judge warning him about the seriousness of the offence, Mabiour insisted he did not want legal representation at his trial.

“A lawyer cannot do anything about my case. No lawyer is good for me in Canada. I’m a Black man,” Mabiour told the judge.

“There is no lawyer good for me to defend me.”

Mabiour has pleaded not guilty to the murder charge, as well as to charges of assault with a weapon and assaulting a police officer.

A University of Calgary law professor says she’s not aware of any other case this serious in which an accused has acted as his or her own lawyer, but it may have happened.

“It’s that person’s right to have (a lawyer) or not,” Lisa Silver said in an interview. “Some people are difficult or some people just don’t want one. It can happen.”

Silver expects the judge in Mabiour’s case will make every effort to ensure that he receives a fair trial. That may mean appointing an amicus curiae, or friend of the court, to help out in some instances, she said.

“Sometimes they will do that particularly when expert evidence is called … or sometimes for legal arguments that an unrepresented person wouldn’t be able to make on their own,” Silver said.

Mabiour was found fit to stand trial following a psychiatric exam ordered by the court after a number of bizarre exchanges with the judge.

Reynolds, a 45-year-old father of two, was attacked with a weapon while working at the clinic on Aug. 10. He died in hospital.

One witness told media that she was in the waiting room when she heard cries for help and saw a man with a hammer and a machete.

RCMP have said the crime was not random and the two men knew each other through the clinic, although they have not said if Mabiour was a patient of Reynolds.

Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press

AlbertaCrime

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19. Black Press file photo
No new COVID-19 cases for Nakusp

Our community has not had a case since January; has only had three in total since pandemic started

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
36 new cases of COVID-19, one death in Interior Health

The number of active cases in the region is at 366

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
43 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health

368 cases in the region remain active

A member of the Avalanche Canada South Rockies field team gathers important snowpack data that is used to produce daily avalanche forecasts for the region. Photo by Jennifer Coulter.
Warming temperatures increase avalanche risk heading into the weekend

Warm temperatures impact conditions, human behaviour

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Interior Health reports 16 new COVID-19 cases

423 cases remain active in the region

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry head for the B.C. legislature press theatre to give a daily update on the COVID-19 pandemic, April 6, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. nears 300,000 COVID-19 vaccinations, essential workers next

564 new cases, four deaths, no new outbreaks Thursday

Walter Gretzky father of hockey hall-of-famer Wayne Gretzky waves to fans as the Buffalo Sabres play against the Toronto Maple Leafs during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky, father of the Great One, dies at 82

Canada’s hockey dad had battled Parkinson’s disease and other health issues

Kelowna General Hospital (File photo)
Second death reported in Kelowna General Hospital COVID-19 outbreak

A total of seven cases have been identified at the hospital: six patients and one staff

Municipal Affairs Minister Josie Osborne speaks in the B.C. legislature, March 4, 2021. (Hansard TV)
B.C. Liberals, NDP sing in harmony on local election reforms

Bill regulates paid canvassers, allows people in condo buildings

(National Emergency Management Agency)
No tsunami risk to B.C. from powerful New Zealand earthquake: officials

An 8.1 magnitude earthquake shook the north of New Zealand Thursday morning

(AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)
Pandemic stress, isolation key factors as to why Canadians turned to cannabis, alcohol

Study found that isolation played key role in Canadians’ substance use

Grand Forks’ Gary Smith stands in front of his Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster float. Photo: Submitted
Grand Forks’ Flying Spaghetti Monster leader still boiling over driver’s licence photo

Gary Smith, head of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster of B.C., said he has since spoken to lawyers

A Cowichan Valley mom is wondering why masks haven’t been mandated for elementary schools. (Metro Creative photo)
B.C. mom frustrated by lack of mask mandate for elementary students

“Do we want to wait until we end up like Fraser Health?”

Most Read