Daniel Keays to undergo psychiatric assessment
Published Thursday, June 30, 2016 6:50PM ADT
A Bedford, Nova Scotia man facing more than a dozen counts including five attempted murder charges will undergo a 30-day psychiatric assessment to determine if he's fit to stand trial.
Court officials were once again back at the Cape Breton Regional Hospital in Sydney on Thursday where Daniel Keays remains.
Deputy sheriffs, the judge, and both the Crown and defence went to the hospital to arraign Keays from his hospital bed.
“Luckily, today Mr. Keays spoke to me and I informed him what was going on and he seemed to understand,” says Defence Lawyer Mike Kuna. “He did not have any objections to the application by the Crown.
That application is for Keays to undergo a 30-day psychiatric assessment, after Crown Attorney Sheldon Nathanson said he had been advised that Keays has been diagnosed with acute psychosis.
“As a result of that, Judge Whalen issued an order for him to be examined in Halifax,” says Nathanson. “It is with respect to fitness to stand trial, as well as the issue of criminal responsibility at the time of the alleged offenses.”
The alleged offenses occurred while Keays was behind the wheel of a motor vehicle last weekend. Police said he intentionally collided with three vehicles, an SUV containing a 49-year-old woman and a five-year-old boy, as well as two motorcycles, knocking two people from each.
Police say Keays also narrowly missed a fourth vehicle before slamming into a guard rail.
Keays is also alleged to have assaulted bystanders and two police officers while trying to escape custody.
“At this point, we will wait for the fitness report from the treating psychiatrist and mental health personal at the hospital,” says Nathanson. “At that point, we will decide what will happen.”
When asked about Keays’ condition, his defence lawyer would only say, he was “a lot better today than the last few days.”
The court also stated today that Keays will remain in custody and will not be granted bail.
After his 30-day assessment at the East Coast Forensic Hospital in Dartmouth, a report will be prepared by mental health officials and presented to the judge and counsel July 29th.
Keays isscheduled to return to Provincial Court at that time.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Kyle Moore