RCMP officer accused in B.C. shooting death elects jury trial

Case of RCMP Constable Jason Tait has first hearing in 2015 shooting death of Waylon Jesse Edey.

The case of the Castlegar RCMP officer charged with manslaughter came before a judge for the first time on Monday.

Jason Tait, a West Kootenay Traffic Unit constable, is charged with manslaughter using a firearm in relation to the shooting of 29-year-old Waylon Jesse Edey during an attempted traffic stop near Castlegar on Jan. 29, 2015.

READ MORE: Constable charged in 2015 shooting

Tait’s lawyer, David Butcher, appeared before the court on his behalf.

Tait elected for a trial by jury and requested the proceedings take place in front of a judge from outside of the West Kootenay. Both requests were granted by Judge Philip Seagram.

Butcher also requested a preliminary inquiry.

“Given the unusual nature of the charge and the seriousness of it, I am going to want to conduct a full preliminary inquiry,” he said.

Tait’s next appearance will be June 14 to fix a date for the inquiry with the condition that the defence files a statement of issues and witnesses before that date.

The charges came more than three years after the incident and after a lengthy investigation by the Independent Investigation Office, B.C.’s police watchdog.

READ MORE: IIO Investigation into Castlegar incident in final stages

READ MORE: Man fatally shot by RCMP had a history of impaired driving

Castlegar RCMP and West Kootenay Traffic Services had been responding to a complaint of an impaired driver in the Castlegar area.

Police eventually located the suspect driving west on Highway 3 on the Kinnaird Bridge in south Castlegar.

According to court documents, Tait had pulled over, gotten out of his cruiser on foot, and tried to get the driver to pull over.

The driver did not stop, but hit the police cruiser. Then, Tait fired his service pistol.

Edey was taken to hospital, but did not survive.

His mother, Deborah Edey, has also filed a civil lawsuit against Tait, alleging the use of deadly force was unwarranted.

She and another relative were present for Monday’s court appearance.

READ MORE: Mother of Waylon Edey sues RCMP officer

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

Just Posted

UPDATED: Mission spray park closed after children suffer swollen eyes, burns

Mission RCMP are investigating incident that injured several children

VIDEO: Abbotsford Agrifair shares more about Drive-Thru Safari concept

Agrifair officials lay out plans for annual event, which runs from July 31 to Aug. 2

RCMP ask for assistance to find missing Chilliwack man

Raymond Gene Jarvis has been missing since early July

Professional basketball in Canada begins return to action with COVID-19 testing

Abbotsford’s Fraser Valley Bandits, six other CEBL teams arrive in Ontario for Summer Series

Chilliwack RCMP seeing surge in telephone-based tax scam

Victims are phoned by someone claiming to represent the Canada Revenue Agency, demanding money

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

Thousands of dollars of stolen rice traced to Langley warehouse

Police raid seizes $75,000 in ‘commercial scale’ theft case

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Surrey’s first Ethics Commissioner brings ‘objectivity’ to the job

Vancouver lawyer Reece Harding is Surrey’s first Ethics Commissioner, also a first for B.C.

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Okanagan home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Most Read