William (Kenny) Brown

William (Kenny) Brown

Accused decides against jury trial

Leon Reinbrecht has re-elected to have his trial in front of a Supreme Court judge alone.

  • Jan. 7, 2015 1:00 p.m.

By Cam Fortens,
Kamloops This Week

A Shuswap-area resident accused of piloting a ski boat that rammed into a houseboat after Canada Day weekend celebrations, killing its operator, is scheduled to stand trial in February, this time by judge alone.

Leon Reinbrecht has re-elected to have his trial in front of a Supreme Court judge alone.

The trial was earlier set to be decided by a jury.

The trial is now scheduled to begin Feb. 10.

Reinbrecht is charged with criminal negligence causing death and criminal negligence causing bodily harm, following the crash in Magna Bay on July 3, 2010, that left an 18-foot Campion Runabout speedboat fully embedded inside the cabin of a houseboat.

The owner and operator of the houseboat, 53-year-old Kenneth William (Kenny) Brown of Chase, was killed in the crash.

Eight other people were taken to hospital in Kamloops, where two remained for treatment and six were released the next day.

Fred Kaatz, one of two defence lawyers representing Reinbrecht, said there remains a challenge under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms for unreasonable delay in the trial. The crash took place as boats were leaving the bay following the annual Canada Day weekend fireworks display.

Reinbrecht was charged in December 2011 following a 17-month investigation carried out by Chase RCMP, with the assistance of investigators from Transport Canada and the B.C. Coroners Service.

The accused man has been represented by a number of lawyers. He is now represented by Kaatz and Vancouver lawyer Joe Doyle.