MONTREAL – The man charged in Quebec’s election night shooting says he’s too far in debt to pay for a lawyer.
Richard Henry Bain made a court appearance Tuesday, on nearly the one-year anniversary of the Sept. 4 shooting that killed one man and injured another at a Parti Quebecois rally.
Premier Pauline Marois has since said she believes she was the intended target in a planned political assassination.
Bain told Quebec Superior Court Tuesday he wants legal aid — even though he’s already been turned down.
Bain, who is representing himself after legal aid said he didn’t qualify for the service, said he already owes $60,000 and can’t afford legal bills.
Justice Marc David told Bain he has to find a lawyer by Nov. 4. That’s when the judge will set a date for Bain’s trial.
“How can I find a lawyer?” Bain demanded. “I’m in jail.”
The judge suggested he contact various bar associations to see if they could recommend someone.
Bain wants the Crown to release his pickup truck, which he says contains $10,000 in jewelry, so he can sell it and the vehicle.
Bain faces more than a dozen charges including first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of a stagehand at a victory rally held by the Parti Quebecois to celebrate their win in the 2012 provincial election.
Lighting technician Denis Blanchette was killed and colleague David Courage was wounded as they stood near a doorway to the downtown Metropolis nightclub where Marois was giving her victory speech last Sept. 4.
The shooting took place outside the club. Marois was hustled from the stage inside by bodyguards in mid-speech at the first report of trouble.
David grew visibily frustrated with Bain during the brief court appearance on Tuesday, telling him not to interrupt when the judge was speaking.
Bain said he had written three letters to the court requesting a lawyer, including one to David himself.
David told him he had to apply to legal aid.
Bain said he couldn’t continue representing himself.
“I’m not a lawyer,” he said.
“I want a fair trial.”
When David told him he would set a trial date on Nov. 4, Bain replied that he didn’t want a trial date, he wanted to be released on bail.
David told Bain he had to file an application — meaning a motion — and Bain repeatedly asked where he could get an application.
Bain began grumbling when the judge told him to find representation by the next court date.
He began rambling out loud, urging people to raise money to help Courage because what happened to him was a tragedy.
As he headed out of the prisoner’s dock, he called Tuesday’s proceedings a “kangaroo court” and said he was in “Quebec, not Canada.”
He paused to bless everyone in the courtroom but could be heard ranting in the corridor leading back to the detention cells.
Crown prosecutor Eliane Perreault has said she expects to call 33 witnesses when the trial gets underway. The trial is expected to last eight weeks.