Colin Wheeler maintained his intentions to represent himself during an appearance in provincial court in Corner Brook on Wednesday.
That was despite the fact a legal aid lawyer was there and prepared to act on his behalf.
Lawyer Gary Kearney told the court that his office received an application from Wheeler on Tuesday. With Wheeler, 35, being in custody, he said he would be accepted and that counsel could be assigned as early as the end of the week.
As Kearney suggested the matter be set over to next week Wheeler could be seen shaking his head on the video feed from Her Majesty’s Penitentiary in St. John’s.
He interrupted by asking Judge Wayne Gorman if he could speak and said he was representing himself.
He said he had no clue what Kearney was talking about and that he had been told to sign something on Tuesday but didn’t know it was an application.
“I don’t want legal aid,” he said.
Later Wheeler said he wanted to be tried by judge alone in the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador with a preliminary inquiry. That’s what he told another judge during a previous appearance.
Wheeler is charged with assault, assault with a weapon, uttering threats to police to cause bodily harm and two counts of mischief. The charges stem from an incident alleged to have taken place in October in Benoit’s Cove, where he had been living.
Wheeler also told the court that his alleged victim went to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police on Tuesday and recanted her statement.
The woman, who is his girlfriend, was present in the court and made several attempts to speak.
Wheeler is not to have any contact with her and he said he wanted to get the order lifted. The Crown is opposed to doing so and Wheeler was told he’d have to file an application and have the matter heard by a judge.
When the woman was finally given an opportunity to speak, she said she had no input on the order and it was not necessary.
“I’m in no way shape or form in fear of my safety.”
The woman was told she would have to continue to comply with the order.
Gorman set the preliminary inquiry in the case for Jan. 17.