Advertisement

Trial begins for Quebec man charged with assaulting and murdering student in 2000

Jury selection is underway in the trial of a man charged with the sexual assault and murder of a 19-year-old Quebec junior college student nearly 24 years ago. Guylaine Potvin, shown in a Surete du Quebec handout photo, was found dead in her apartment in Jonquière, Que. on April 28, 2000. HO Sûreté du Québec/The Canadian Press

Jury selection began Monday in the trial of a man charged with the sexual assault and murder of a 19-year-old Quebec junior college student nearly 24 years ago.

Marc-André Grenon is charged with the first-degree murder and aggravated sexual assault of Guylaine Potvin, who was found dead in April 2000 in her apartment in Jonquière, some 215 kilometres north of Quebec City.

Grenon was present at the courthouse in Chicoutimi Monday and pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Superior Court Justice François Huot told potential jurors today at the courthouse in Chicoutimi that the trial is expected to last about five weeks.

Superior Court Justice François Huot told potential jurors that the trial is expected to last about five weeks, and will include testimony from 11 Crown witnesses.

Story continues below advertisement

The case is expected to shed light on the forensic techniques that led police to arrest Grenon in 2022, more than two decades after the killing.

Breaking news from Canada and around the world sent to your email, as it happens.

Huot said Potvin’s body was found on April 28, 2000, in the basement apartment where she lived, mostly unclothed and bearing multiple injuries. An autopsy would conclude that she’d been strangled and sexually assaulted, and scene analysis suggested the assault began while the victim slept, he said.

The judge said investigators were able to build a full male DNA profile from bodily substances left at the scene, including on a belt, but the profile did not match anyone in the database.

It was only decades later that a “particular scientific technique” led investigators to hone in on the Grenon surname, which eventually led to the suspect’s arrest after DNA from two straws he used were linked to a sample collected at the crime scene, Huot said.

Story continues below advertisement

“The analysis of a forensic biologist then allows us to conclude that the genetic profile obtained on the straws in question is associated with that found 22 years earlier at the crime scene,” he said.

The allegations have not been proven in court.

Sponsored content

AdChoices