Michelle Hanson, an Amaranth mother facing charges in relation to the 2018 death of her three-year old son Kaden Young, has requested new trial dates be set in her latest appearance in court on Tuesday (April 20).
“After having an opportunity over the last week or so to have further discussion with Ms. Hanson and consult with her on the matter, it is her wish and my request that we move towards rescheduling trial dates in this matter,” Marco Forte, Hanson’s defense attorney, told Justice Giselle Miller.
Forte also said they would be forgoing any further resolutions discussions at this time.
Miller said because she was not given notice prior to the court appearance she would need to consult with the regional trial co-ordinator to make a decision on setting a new date.
Hanson’s trial was originally scheduled to begin in a Guelph courtroom on March 8, but was put on hold as jury trials in Ontario are currently not being held due to COVID-19 restrictions. Her trial was relocated to Guelph from Orangeville in September of 2020, following a request from Forte that the trial be held in a jurisdiction outside of Dufferin County.
Speaking to the timeframe needed for the trial, Forte said that he believed four weeks would be a reasonable adding that an additional “defence expert witness, an expert toxicologist”, could be the only change.
Assistant Crown Attorney, Danielle Garbaty said the trial could probably been done in less than four weeks and that it was enough time.
No jury trials are being held in Central West Region until at least June 7. Miller said the trial will likely be sometime in the fall.
The matter was remanded to June 8 at 9 a.m.
On the early morning hours of Feb. 21, 2018, Hanson’s vehicle was pulled into the Grand River following heavy flooding, which saw the river water rise up onto the road. Hanson, police said, drove around a ‘road closed’ sign at the 10th Line of Amaranth.
Both Hanson and Kaden, who was in the vehicle with his mother, managed to escape but Kaden was pulled out of his mother’s arms. Kaden’s body was later recovered in Belwood Lake on April 21, two months to the day of the incident.
Hanson is being tried on charges of impaired driving causing death and criminal negligence causing death.
Paula Brown, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shelburne Free Press