Defence lawyer attacks credibility of complainants

Horne to testify this January


Accused child molester Ed Horne will return to court in Iqaluit on Jan. 24, 2008 to testify in his own defence.

Horne is accused of molesting four boys aged six to 15 in the 1970s and 1980s, inside homes and schools in Kimmirut, Cape Dorset and Iqaluit. The trial, on 10 sex charges, started Monday.

Justice Robert Kilpatrick will use the time between now and then to decide on a request by Crown lawyer Judy Chan to allow the admission of transcripts from Horne's court appearances in 1987 and 2000.

"I'm not prepared to do it today. I'm not prepared to wing it," Kilpatrick said Wednesday.

Normally, information related to an accused's previous convictions may not be used as evidence in trials. Kilpatrick must now decide if an exception to this principle is justified in Horne's case.

On Tuesday, the Crown's fourth witness testified Horne molested him when he and two friends visited Horne's Iqaluit home in 1981 to play a video game.

The friends wanted to leave and the witness went with them. But the three returned a couple of days later, and when the witness's two friends left that time, he stayed. Then, the witness testified, Horne "grabbed me by the middle and sat me down on top of him."

The witness said Horne fondled him and tried to engage in anal sex with him, but the witness stood up and told Horne he was going to tell his grandmother what happened. The witness said Horne told him to leave.

The witness said he ran across the street to his grandmother's house and told her what happened.

"She got really mad," the man testified. "She took my grandfather's hammer and she went out of the house… and my grandmother went to [Ed Horne's] house. She was banging on the door and said if he came out she was going to hit him with the hammer."

The Crown's first witness described parties at Horne's home in Cape Dorset where several of Horne's 10-year-old students would watch pornographic movies, while Horne took a bath.

The witness said Horne would sometimes take pictures of male students in wedding dresses, tuxedos or women's underwear.

He also testified Horne tried to make him perform oral and anal sex in the showers of the Cape Dorset school where Horne worked at the time. The witness said Horne ran the all-male class with an iron fist, twisting students' arms, grabbing their ears and pinching them.

"He was somewhat violent, he was very physical," the witness said.

The Crown's third witness testified Horne forced him to have anal sex in the staff room of a school in Kimmirut. But the witness repeatedly said he couldn't remember details of the alleged offences under cross-examination by defence lawyer Tom Boyd.

Boyd had entered into evidence a two-page statement written by the third witness in 2004 after being arrested for sexual assault. In the statement, the witness's first name is spelled two different ways, and the number 7 is written differently at the top and bottom of the document.

That, Boyd said, is evidence the witness didn't write the statement on his own.

The witness, drinking water constantly during his testimony, grew angry.

"This is all my writing," he shot back. "Everything."

Boyd also suggested the first three witnesses, all of whom made their complaints against Horne after they were arrested for various offences, were motivated by the prospect of receiving compensation. The current batch of charges against Horne were laid between 2001 and 2005.

The governments of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut reached a $21 million settlement with more than 80 of Horne's victims in 2002.

During breaks, some passers-by heckled Horne outside the courthouse despite heavy security at trial. An RCMP officer was posted inside the courtroom and a sheriff sat at a table outside.

On Monday, Justice Robert Kilpatrick threw out five more charges against Horne because one witness couldn't be found and another, who suffered three recent deaths in his family, refused to testify.

Horne, who lives in Toronto, must report to police within 24 hours of his return to Toronto, report any change of address to police, and report to police every two weeks.

He is not allowed to be in the unsupervised presence of anyone under 18, except for immediate family. He must not apply for a passport or leave the province of Ontario until his trial date in January.

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