The man accused of driving the boat that killed an 18-year-old on Osoyoos Lake three years ago may have to find a new lawyer.
Balfour Der has been representing Ryan William Symington, 30, through the early stages of the case against him in provincial court in Penticton, but is having difficulty setting a date for a preliminary inquiry to determine if there is enough evidence to send the matter to trial.
Der told a pre-trial conference Monday his schedule is “a bit full” from January through July 2015, so he isn’t available for an inquiry in February or March as proposed by the Crown.
Crown counsellor Mallory Treddenick said pushing the inquiry to next summer would create a four-year delay from the alleged offence date in August 2011 and could cause “prejudice to the recollection of the witnesses and whatnot.”
Der, who’s based in Calgary and appeared by phone, noted charges were only sworn against Symington in April 2014, and suggested police and the Crown are responsible for the delay.
Judge Greg Koturbash said putting over the matter until next summer “wouldn’t be acceptable to the court.” He noted people are entitled to counsel of their choice, “but it all has to be within reason.”
Koturbash said Der will either have to make time for the preliminary inquiry next winter or spring, or Symington will have to find a new lawyer.
The matter is due back in court Sept. 10.
Symington faces five charges in connection with the death of 18-year-old Marco Corbin on Aug. 16, 2011. Corbin was killed when the tube on which he was being towed by a boat was run over by another vessel.