Polson Park shootout trial hears from shooting witness
The trial of a man accused of taking part in a daytime shootout in Vernon’s Polson Park heard from someone who said he witnessed the shooting.
Jacob Lowes is facing five charges, including attempted murder.
Lowes was the target of a robbery attempt in unit 109 of the Green Valley Motel, Crown counsel has alleged.
Lowes allegedly chased them into Polson Park when that robbery attempt went awry and ended up in a shootout with one of them, the Crown added.
Lowes has pleaded not guilty to all five charges.
The witness told the court that he and two others went to the Green Valley Motel, across the street from Polson Park, on the morning of Aug. 12, 2014.
He said he was instructed to wait outside while the other two went around the back.
While waiting, he heard a loud bang coming from inside unit 109 that sounded like a shotgun, the witness told court.
Then the two people he arrived with came running and all three ran toward Polson Park.
He said he looked back and saw someone chasing after them.
The trio split up once they arrived at the park. The witness went toward a skateboard park while the other two headed for an area closer to the highway.
The witness said he saw gunfire exchanged between the person who was chasing them and one of the people he came to the Green Valley Motel with.
He couldn’t provide a detailed description of the person who had been pursuing them, describing him only as a “white guy.”
He acknowledged that he was effectively acting as a lookout that day but said he wasn’t aware of that at the time.
He simply stayed outside of the motel because he was asked to do so, he said.
The witness has Asperger’s, court was told.
He testified that the pair picked him up to go to the Green Valley Motel that day so that they could talk to someone. He admitted under cross-examination that he had a pellet gun with him that day. He wrapped the pellet gun in a hoodie and left it in Polson Park.
The former manager of the now-shuttered Green Valley Motel also testified Thursday.
Jesse Lopienski told the court under cross-examination that Lowes was not the registered tenant of unit 109 at the time of the shooting.
The registered tenant did tell Lopienski that Lowes might stay there as well, he testified.
Defense counsel appears to be trying to poke holes in the prosecution’s argument that Lowes was the target of a robbery attempt in unit 109.
Lopienski said, in general, the motel was trying to help people by providing housing opportunities but that people took advantage of that.
Robin Rochemont and Adrian Dziedzic have also been charged in connection with the shootout. They are set to be tried on a variety of weapons related charges in May.
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