The question of whether former CTV Ottawa weatherman J.J. Clarke can be held criminally responsible on multiple harassment charges is back in the hands of a physician at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre.
Clarke, 66, whose real name is Ron Rowat, is facing seven charges relating to three complainants. The allegations against him, which have not been proven in court, include that he stalked, threatened and harassed an Ottawa Valley woman.
Rowat was deemed fit to stand trial in October, but his lawyers are now asking he be reassessed to determine if he can be held criminally responsible for his actions. The same doctor who performed the initial tests will handle the new request, according to lawyer Lawrence Greenspon.
"It was clear to me, at least that the allegations that were being made against Mr. Rowat were completely out of character for him," said Greenspon.
"Ron is somebody who has been a community leader for some four decades. I've had the pleasure and privilege of working with him in many, many community events and the allegations that were being made, simply, were completely out of character for him."
Greenspon said if the new assessment concludes Rowat should not be held criminally responsible, the case will most likely not go to trial, but will instead be resolved in another way.
He expects the test results will be available in the coming weeks.