NHL player to plead guilty in grizzly kill: Crown

NHL defenceman accused of illegal bear hunt in B.C. plans to plead guilty: Crown

Anaheim Ducks defenceman Clayton Stoner (right) throws down with Canucks forward Brandon Prust

By Tamsyn Burgmann, The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER – An NHL player accused of illegally shooting a grizzly bear on British Columbia’s central coast intends to plead guilty, says a Crown lawyer.

Clayton Stoner of the Anaheim Ducks faces five charges for a hunt in 2013, but his case was adjourned Friday.

Prosecutor Jim Cryder told a provincial court judge that he spoke with Stoner’s lawyer, who, along with Stoner, did not appear in court.

“Mr. Stoner, through his counsel, would like to enter a plea, as I understand, as soon as possible and dispose of the matter,” Cryder told the judge.

A legal articling student who appeared on behalf of Stoner’s lawyer, Marvin Stern, confirmed that intention to Judge Brent Hoy.

Stoner has never denied the hunt, which sparked outrage after photos published in a Vancouver newspaper two years ago showed him holding a bear’s severed head.

But the former Port McNeill, B.C., resident did not meet residency requirements to have a hunting licence, according to the B.C. Conservation Officer Service.

Stoner is charged with two counts of knowingly making a false statement to obtain a hunting licence. He also faces separate counts of hunting out of season, hunting without a licence and unlawfully possessing dead wildlife.

Outside court, Cryder said it was not unusual for the case to be delayed.

“It takes time to negotiate things and have agreement,” he said. “It’s a slow process.”

He added that Stoner is not legally required to attend the hearings and a lawyer can enter a plea on his behalf at a future date, which has not been set.

About a dozen people who protested before the hearing and are demanding a ban on trophy hunting were disappointed that the case has been postponed at least three times.

“Clayton Stoner is used to penalties in his hockey career, but this should be the biggest penalty of his life,” said Mary-Sue Atkinson, from North Vancouver.

The bear, which local residents had named Cheeky, was killed in an area known as the Great Bear Rainforest.

Just Posted

Ballenas students question Parksville council on city issues

Students grilled council on homelessness, snow removal and the need for more activities for youth

Ballenas students launch fundraiser for U.S. travel to promote science experiment

Students’ experiment headed for International Space Station

Search is on for parties to build $10.7M Bowser sewage project

Further investigation of land disposal option rejected by RDN board

Parksville council won’t ban single-use plastic bags

Politicians vote 6-1 against proposed bylaw

RDN dealing with high interest in backyard cannabis production

New policy proposed to address challenges with Health Canada licences

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

Girl heard saying ‘Help my Dad’ in suspicious radio message on Vancouver Island

Police asking for help following mysterious signals from somewhere between Comox and Sayward

Vehicle smashes through front of furniture store in Nanaimo

No injuries reported in Friday incident

Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

One dead, two seriously injured in Hwy 4 crash west of Port Alberni

A man has died following a single-vehicle collision west of Port Alberni… Continue reading

Two more measles cases confirmed in Vancouver

It brings the number of total cases within the city connected to the outbreak to ten

B.C. Special Olympics officially underway in Vernon

Athlete’s Oath: “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”

Vancouver Aquarium wants your help to name a baby killer whale

The public helped name Springer’s first calf, Spirit, and is being asked to help with the second

Most Read