Judge denies bail to William Sandeson as he awaits murder retrial

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WATCH: A Nova Scotia Court of Appeal judge has denied bail to William Sandeson as he awaits retrial on a charge of first-degree murder. Graeme Benjamin brings us the latest – Jan 22, 2021

William Sandeson, a former medical student who is facing a retrial on a charge of first-degree murder, will not be allowed out on bail while he waits.

Sandeson, 28, was found guilty of first-degree murder in 2017, but the conviction was overturned in June 2020 after the Court of Appeal found that a mistrial should have been granted. Sandeson has been in custody since Aug. 18, 2015.

Sandeson was found guilty for his role in the death of fellow Dalhousie University student Taylor Samson in August 2015.

Read more: William Sandeson still seeking new lawyer ahead of murder retrial

The appellate court ruled there should have been a mistrial after it was found that a private detective for the defence gave critical information to the police about evidence.

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In the decision, Justice David Farrar said the trial judge “erred in failing to consider whether the undisclosed evidence impacted the ability of the defence to bring process-oriented responses such as Charter challenges.”

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William Sandeson granted new murder trial – Jun 17, 2020

Sandeson was trying to be released on bail as he awaits that new trial, but his request was denied on Friday by Justice James Chipman.

“We are pleased that Justice Chipman listened to everything that was presented to the court and felt also that our argument was supported,” said Crown attorney Christine Driscoll after the ruling was handed down in Nova Scotia Supreme Court Friday.

The bail hearing heard evidence on Wednesday and Thursday, however, the evidence that was presented in court and the judge’s justification for denying bail remains under a publication ban.

Samson, 22, was last seen alive on video with Sandeson the night of Aug. 15, 2015, walking with the former medical student into his apartment on Henry Street in Halifax.

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He was never seen leaving the apartment and his body has never been found.

Read more: Convicted Dalhousie killer William Sandeson appeals murder conviction

During the trial, it was heard that Samson went to Sandeson’s apartment to sell him nine kilograms of weed for $40,000. In August 2015, Samson was about to enter his fifth year of school and was studying physics, while Sandeson was days away from starting his first year of medical school.

After the decision was handed down, Samson’s mother said she’s still seeking justice.

“I’m tired. I just want to find my son,” said Linda Boutilier, Samson’s mother. “I just really wish this was over. I just don’t want to go through another five years of this again.

“I wish his parents would make him accountable for what he did and stop being naive, and realize my son is still missing, and he’s out there somewhere, and I want to put him to rest.”

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