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Calgary judge to rule next week on bail for teen charged in police officer’s death

January 20, 2021  By Canadian Press

Calgary – A judge is to decide next week if a teen charged with first-degree murder in the hit-and-run death of a Calgary police officer will be released.

A bail hearing began on Tuesday for the 18-year-old and wrapped up Wednesday morning.

The accused was 17 at the time Sgt. Andrew Harnett was killed on Dec. 31 and cannot be named under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

Youth court Judge Steve Lipton has reserved his decision until Jan. 28.

Police have said Harnett was hit and dragged while attempting to stop an SUV after noticing its plates didn’t match its registration.

They allege the accused youth was driving the SUV and a 19-year-old man, also charged with first-degree murder, was a passenger.

Prosecutor Doug Taylor told court Tuesday that the Crown will seek an adult sentence for the youth if he’s convicted. That would mean life in prison with no eligibility of parole for 10 years.

He explained outside court why the Crown is opposed to the suspect’s release.

“The young person ought to be detained for both the safety and the protection of the public, and to maintain confidence in the administration of justice,” Taylor said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 20, 2021

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