Bill Graveland, Canadian Press – April 20, 2018 12:39 PM EDT (stock photo)
OKOTOKS, Alta. — The wife of a man charged after shots were fired during a confrontation on his rural property in southern Alberta says the whole process has been terrifying.
Edouard Maurice made a brief court appearance in Okotoks, Alta., on Friday and the case was put over until May 4.
His wife, Jessica Maurice, said the court process has been difficult for her family.
“Obviously, it’s a very stressful situation. Eddie’s facing potential jail time and we’re normal people,” she said outside court.
“We don’t have involvement in the criminal justice system. It’s terrifying and we’re under a lot of stress, obviously, but we’re trying to handle it as best as we can.”
Maurice, 33, was charged after he allegedly confronted two people rummaging through his vehicles Feb 25. Shots were fired and one of the suspects was later found with an arm injury and taken to hospital.
Several people are facing theft, trespassing and mischief charges.
Maurice’s lawyer, Tonii Roulston, said it’s frustrating that the Crown still hasn’t provided some integral pieces of evidence, including police and forensic reports.
“From our perspective, we can’t call our own experts or have our own expert assess this case until we have the full allegations,” Roulston said.
She said she hopes the charges will be withdrawn so the case doesn’t go to trial but, if it does, she is optimistic.
“Certainly I think the support we have in the community will speak for itself through the jury.”
As with previous court appearances, about 50 supporters showed up on Friday to support Maurice.
His friend Travis Dunne urged those at the courthouse to keep fundraising to help Maurice with his legal bills.
“Eddie should be able to protect his family, and as citizens we should be able to protect ourselves and protect our family and kids,” Dunne said.
He said supporters so far have raised $29,000 at the TD Bank and an additional $36,000 through GoFundMe.
“We have a good start to support him and his family,” he said. “If this goes to trial we are going to need to raise more funds for them.”