The trial of a man accused of killing an off-duty police officer in the summer of 2020 on Baker Street in Nelson will begin on Feb. 28, 2023.
Const. Allan Young was seriously injured in an incident on July 16, 2020, after he allegedly approached a man causing a disturbance in downtown Nelson. Young died five days later.
Manslaughter charges were laid against Alex Willness on March 7, 2021. He was refused bail on March 22 and has been in custody since. The evidence presented at the bail hearing is protected by a court-imposed publication ban and therefore cannot be reported.
After almost a year of multiple brief appearances and adjournments in B.C. Provincial Court, the case was moved this month to B.C. Supreme Court in Nelson.
Willness was previously sentenced to 14 days in jail and 18 months’ probation for a February 2013 assault of a peace officer, as well as for a charge of mischief and two charges of breaching his court-ordered conditions.
He also has a 2013 conviction for impaired driving causing bodily harm – for which he was handed a two-year driving ban and 30 days in jail – and a 2019 conviction for mischief, for which he was given 12 months’ probation.
Young had been a member of the Abbotsford Police Department since 2004, after having served in the Toronto Police Service.
With files from Vikki Hopes