Murder suspect remains in custody 

Next appearance delayed to April 11

By Andrew Mitchell

Shane Robert Joseph Richard, 27, the man accused of shooting and killing another man in Whistler Village in the early morning hours of March 10, will remain in police custody until his arraignment hearing on April 11.

Richard may still apply to the Supreme Court of the province for an interim release at any time, but according to Crown Counsel Monte Ruttan of the North Vancouver Provincial Court they have not received notice of an application at this stage.

The fatal incident took place in the Village Square area at approximately 2 a.m. on Saturday, March 10. There was an altercation between two groups, according to police reports, at which point Richard is accused of shooting and killing Michael George Boutros, age 26, of Coquitlam.

An RCMP officer of the Lower Mainland Police Dog Service Team witnessed the incident, and quickly subdued Richard with the assistance of his dog.

Last week Richard, who lives in Surrey, was formally charged with second-degree murder — Whistler’s first in many years.

Richard has a criminal record, with past offences that includes drug trafficking. Four days before the shooting he was scheduled to appear in court on an unrelated charge, but was a no-show.

Because the arraignment is taking place in provincial court and second degree murder falls under the supreme court jurisdiction, Richard cannot enter a plea of guilty or not guilty on April 11. The hearing may result in Richard asking for a preliminary inquiry into the matter, or another hearing may be scheduled for a later date. Once the preliminary inquiry begins the case will be assigned a Crown prosecutor.

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