Thursday, December 22, 2011

Bulletin: Brenda Waudby; Bid to have coerced guilty plea overturned; Another delay. Case put over until January 19, 2012. Peterborough Examiner;

STORY: "Waudby case back in court Jan. 19," published earlier today by the Peterborough Examiner.

GIST: "The case has been moving in incremental steps, but her lawyer Julie Kirkpatrick said she anticipates matters to move much more quickly in the new year. Waudby is arguing that she was coerced into pleading guilty to a charge of child abuse. Waudby was wrongfully accused of her 21-month-old daughter Jenna Mellor's murder in 1997. That charge was withdrawn in 1999, weeks after Waudby pleaded guilty to a charge of child abuse. Brenda Waudby's application to have a child abuse conviction overturned will return to court Jan. 19 in Newmarket."

PUBLISHER'S VIEW: (EDITORIAL);  It is clear from the evidence called at the Goudge inquiry that Brenda Waudby - an utterly innocent individual who's baby daughter had been murdered by her babysitter - had been required to plead guilty to a charge of child abuse under provincial legislation before the Crown would withdraw the the second-degree murder charge on the basis of medical opinions which showed she could not possibly have committed the crime. It is also clear that Dr. Charles Smith's opinion that there were injuries which preceded the attack on Baby Jenna - which led to her being wrongfully charged with murder - was also the basis for the provincial charge, along with what the police claimed to be a confession. Instead of receiving the sympathy and compassion she deserved as a grieving mother whose baby daughter had been murdered, Ms. Waudby, a grieving mother, was herself charged with the horrific crime and not surprisingly became a pariah in her community. Brenda Waudby has been given a raw deal by Ontario's criminal justice system. We can only hope that the Court will hurry up and finally and unequivocally clear her name;