IHIT officers on scene at the Langley Township apartment building where the body of Aaliyah Rosa was found in July, 2018. (Langley Advance Times files)

IHIT officers on scene at the Langley Township apartment building where the body of Aaliyah Rosa was found in July, 2018. (Langley Advance Times files)

COVID, health delays won’t stop Langley murder trial, judge says

The trial of KerryAnn Lewis is to resume Dec. 14

WARNING: This story may contain disturbing content

The accused in a Langley child murder case is fit to continue with the trial, a judge decided Friday, but COVID-19 and other health issues have already caused multiple delays.

The accused, KerryAnn Lewis, was examined by phone by a doctor with the Forensic Psychiatric Service Friday morning, Justice Martha Devlin was told in a New Westminster courtroom.

The doctor did not see any reason why Lewis was not fit to continue with the trial, despite the fact that Lewis collapsed in court on Wednesday morning.

“Our instructions are that she [Lewis] wishes to proceed,” said Marilyn Sandford, the defense lawyer.

Lewis has pleaded not guilty to a charge of first degree murder in the death of her seven-year-old daughter Aaliyah Rosa.

Aaliyah was found dead inside Lewis’s Langley apartment on July 22, 2018. The Crown prosecutors said at the outset of the case that they intend to prove that Lewis sedated and then drowned Aaliyah in the apartment bathtub.

Multiple witnesses have testified that Lewis had been upset about her lack of access to her daughter, who lived with her father.

READ MORE: Accused in Langley child-murder trial collapses in court

READ MORE: Accused wanted to die to be together with her daughter, witness testifies

On Wednesday, Nov. 18, Lewis fainted in court shortly after Devlin had announced plans to pause the trial to have the accused seen by a doctor.

A loud thud was audible over the audio link to the trial, and court staff called for emergency medical personnel to check Lewis out.

She was apparently speaking after her collapse, and was seen by paramedics in courthouse cells.

The incident was the latest in a series of health-related delays that have struck the trial, involving both Lewis, who has been too ill to attend court on a few days, as well as witnesses.

Multiple witnesses, including one of the Emergency Health Services paramedics, have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or have had to quarantine after an exposure.

The latest to be affected was the toxicology expert who was scheduled to testify on Friday morning, but was awaiting a COVID test result after developing symptoms, the court heard.

Sandford noted that there was no sign the COVID-related problems would dissipate by mid-December, when the trial is scheduled to resume.

“It’s possible the COVID situation may actually be worse,” she noted.

Devlin insisted the trial would conclude despite the delays.

“It will take the time it takes,” the judge said.

The trial is now scheduled to resume on Dec. 14 for a week of testimony.

“Hopefully, everyone will stay healthy until then,” said Devlin.

The judge is expected to hear from paramedics, the toxicologist, and staff at two stores where Lewis stopped with Aaliyah the morning before the child’s death, including a drug store and a liquor store.

If the trial takes longer, Devlin said a week can be reserved in January to finish hearing the evidence.

CourtIHITLangleymurder

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Pastry chef Eric Fernandez stands alongside some of his many creations at Popup Patisserie, a pop-up pastry shop on 176th Street that will be open until the end of December. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Popup Patisserie opens in Cloverdale

Handmade holiday pastries shop located on 176th Street

Tom Jackson and bassist Kirby Barber in a trailer for "The Huron Carole," from video posted to youtube.com.
Tom Jackson’s ‘Huron Carole’ concert in White Rock goes virtual to feed hungry Canadians

Surrey broadcast date of Blue Frog-recorded show is Friday, Dec. 11, to benefit Surrey Food Bank

The COVID-19 test centre at Peace Arch Hospital is located on the building’s south side. (Tracy Holmes photo)
South Surrey woman calls for consistency in COVID-19 post-test messaging

‘Could we just get one thing straight?’ asks Deb Antifaev

A worker from Yellow Fence Rentals installs fencing around Cloverdale Youth Park Nov. 25. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Cloverdale Youth Park closed

Basketball court and skate park fenced off

Joel Goddard and Susie Fletcher are parents of a baby son. Joel hasn’t been seen since Nov. 10. (Missing Joel Goddard Facebook page)
Family and friends continue searching for missing Langley father

Helicopters, drones and foot searches planned in the coming days

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest day of pandemic with 13 deaths, 738 new COVID-19 cases

Number of people in hospital is nearing 300, while total cases near 30,000

(File photo)
Alberta woman charged after allegedly hitting boy with watermelon at Okanagan campsite

Police say a disagreement among friends at an Adams Lake campsite turned ugly

Court of Appeal for British Columbia in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. woman loses appeal to have second child by using late husband’s sperm

Assisted Human Reproduction Act prohibits the removal of human reproductive material from a donor without consent

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. projects targeting the restoration of sockeye salmon stocks in the Fraser and Columbia Watersheds will share in $10.9 million of federal funding to protect species at risk. (Kenny Regan photo)
13 projects protecting B.C. aquatic species at risk receive $11 million in federal funding

Salmon and marine mammals expected to benefit from ecosystem-based approach

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Krista Macinnis displays the homework assignment that her Grade 6 daughter received on Tuesday. (Submitted photo)
B.C. mom angry that students asked to list positive stories about residential schools

Daughter’s Grade 6 class asked to write down 5 positive stories or facts

Barrels pictured outside Oliver winery, Quinta Ferreira, in May. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
B.C. Master of Wine reflects on industry’s teetering economic state

Pandemic, for some wine makers, has been a blessing in disguise. For others, not so much.

Most Read