As promised, some information from closing arguments from the sex abuse trial of previously convicted former Cornwall teacher the Marcel Lalonde .
As I mentioned before, my husband and I, Lalonde’s partner and one female Lalonde supporter were the only people in the courtroom on Friday, 17 November 2017 for closing arguments . And, as I mentioned before, I unfortunately was not in court to hear the testimony of the complainant or that of his mother so can not put the closing arguments into context in relation to their testimony. Plus, as you know, there is, as is the norm in these trials, a publication ban on the name of the complainant and anything which would identify. I will therefore make the following limited comments regarding closing arguments.
Defence: Don Johnson
1. Focused on credibility of the complainant, and referenced the fact that the complainant has a criminal record and, according to Johnson, admitted he lied. Said that Greg’s evidence is “tainted.”
Suggested Greg told police about Lalonde to “alleviate the pressure on him” from the criminal charges;
2. Referred to the complainant’s mother as a “pleasant lady” and acknowledged that she testified that “Greg” stayed after school 2-3 times/week;
3. Stressed the fact that one former student testified that she never stayed after school. (One male testified that he stayed after school several days a week and soemtimes was back in the evenings);
4. Said that Lalonde and Lamoureaux have great respect and love for each other, and have a relationship which is steadfast and loyal and then questioned why Lalonde would step out of bounds of that relationship. A little later Johnson questioned why would Lalonde “suddenly want to take him [Greg] on as a sexual partner?”;
5. . Said that under cross examination Greg said he didn’t know that Lalonde wore dentures and had to remove them to engage in oral sex;
7. Claims no one knows why Lalonde was at the home of the complainant, but that the Crown will say that it was grooming;
8. Used Case Law to try to prove that Greg is what he termed an “unsavory witness.”
Crown (Assistant Crown – Brockville): Claudette Breault
1. Told the Court that the two cases Johnson provided to prove Greg an “unsavory witness” were not applicable;
2. Said that while he was on the stand Lalonde called Greg a lot of things, including belligerent, rude, bad boy, and all sorts of things, – “but never did he call him a liar”;
2. Greg’s mother testified that every other year every other teacher told her that Greg was a nice polite boy but just could not settle down in class. But, when Greg was in Lalonde’s class she was never told that Greg had trouble settling down in class. Lalonde always told Greg’s parents that the boy was doing well. This is not at all how Lalonde portrayed the boy in his testimony;
3. Greg’s mother recalled very clearly having Marcel Lalonde to her home for dinner. She apparently testified that she is a terrible cook and was really concerned about preparing the meal. She cooked spaghetti and meat sauce, and was so happy that Lalonde cleaned off the plate (Lalonde flatly denied eating a meal at the home. he insists the visit was short). Said that the visit was part of the grooming ;
4. Lalonde performed oral sex on Greg. Greg said that he was never asked to perform sex acts on Lalonde;
5. As far as Lalonde and his dentures and oral sex are concerned, the Crown simply said “Really! the penis size of an 11-year-old is quite different” from that of an adult male;
6. Said that the mother testified that when Greg came home from school he would go straight to his room. He was very quiet.
7. Greg started rejecting religion because Lalonde was teaching religion.
It sounds as though some of Lalonde’s prior convictions were tied into use as similar fact evidence.
It also sounds as though Greg first went to police with his allegations against Lalonde, and then told a counsellor. My understanding is that the counsellor in turn contacted police.
I’m not sure if I told you before or not, but Lalonde denies that he ever molested anyone. He denies the current charges. He denies the charge for which he entered a guilty plea. He denies the charges for which he was convicted.
Also, by way of interest for those who followed Cornwall sex abuse scandal and cover-up over the years, the Assistant Crown handling the case is from Brockville, Ontario. The Crown in Brockville is Curt Flanagan
And, with that, the next court date for Marcel Lalonde is:
06 December 2017: VERDICT, 10 am, Cornwall, Ontario courthouse (29 Second St. W., )
Please keep the complainant and his family in your prayers.
I have been doing a lot of thinking over the past months. Wrestling with myself 🙂 The two trips to Cornwall last week and seeing Marcel Lalonde in the courtroom defended by Don Johnson finally brought it to an end.
I will be writing that book I was going to write when the Cornwall Public Inquiry ended. I must.
This decision obviously has a significant impact on how I operate Sylvia’s Site over the next year or so. I have been thinking that through. I just will not have the time to operate and maintain the site as I do now. I have decided therefore that I will deal only with criminal cases which are or should be before the courts. That means I will continue to post names of those clergy and religious accused criminally and then keep tabs on their court dates and the outcome so that those who are interested can keep in touch with what is happening. I will not “open pages” for clergy named in lawsuits. It is very difficult for me to follow those through to conclusion, and frequently I do not get word of an outcome. I will however, when I can, post articles which refer to launching of lawsuits.
That’s where I am at right now, and that is what I think I may be able to handle and maintain as I delve into and write about “Cornwall.”
Please say a wee prayer for me as I continue to think this through and sort out the best way to handle things.
Enough for now,