When the Amanda Dumont, Scott Bakker trial began on November 21, 2016 the jury was promised it would finish well before Christmas. After crawling into its fourth week on Monday, it became apparent that it would take a lot longer than expected.
From day one the jury was exposed to graphic and stomach turning evidence surrounding the death of 20-month-old Ryker Daponte-Michaud. The toddler is the biological son of Amanda Dumont, and was found dead in May 2014 with third degree burns covering almost a quarter of his body. The burns were believed to be from a spilled coffee 2 days prior of his death.
He was never taken to receive the appropriate medical treatment and would ultimately succumb to dehydration, and ketoacidosis, which is a stress response Ryker’s body had to the thermal burns.
Late last week one of the accused, 30 year old Amanda Dumont, got very ill and was treated for appendicitis. She would not be able to show up to court due to her illness, further pushing back the already slow trial. Monday was the deciding day, either she would be able to continue the trial because she was feeling better, or the judge would have to make a tough decision as to whether the trial should continue.
That tough decision was made, and Justice Johanne Morissette declared a mistrial. She said, “Ms. Dumont is here but ought not to be”. Dumont was taking narcotics but could not participate to her full potential, and the Judge said continuing the trial would not be fair to her.
Both the Crown and Scott Bakker’s team wanted to continue, but Bakker’s lawyer said that his client understands Dumont is ill and the judge had no other choice.
Tuesday the trial got a new date to begin, June 2017. Picking a jury might be hard because of the attention that this trial got, so moving locations is certainly an option that is being entertained.