POLITICS

No bail for man charged with 'heinous' beating of Montreal bus driver: high court

05/15/2015 02:13 EDT | Updated 05/15/2016 05:59 EDT
OTTAWA - The Supreme Court says a man accused of violently beating a Montreal bus driver must return to jail while awaiting trial.

Jeffrey St-Cloud was charged with aggravated assault in connection with the alleged attack in April 2013.

St-Cloud, who is in his early 20s, was originally refused bail but a Quebec Superior Court justice overturned that decision.

In a ruling Friday, though, the Supreme Court called St-Cloud's behaviour "heinous" and said the decision to deny bail was the correct one so that citizens would not lose confidence in the justice system.

The incident was recorded by two security cameras.

St-Cloud, who has been free on bail since September 2013, will now return to jail pending a trial that is scheduled to begin in January 2016.

The Supreme Court described his behaviour as "heinous."

"In the face of such a brutal attack... (which) was captured on a videotape that left no doubt as to the respondent’s active participation in the assault, I believe that the confidence in our justice system of a reasonable member of our society would be undermined if the interim detention of the respondent were not ordered," wrote Justice Richard Wagner.

St-Cloud's lawyer, Andre Lapointe, expressed disappointment with the ruling because what happened the night of the alleged beating was "a fight that went wrong" and an "unfortunate escalation of violence."

Lapointe said the Supreme Court justices didn't sufficiently take into consideration the freedoms guaranteed under the federal Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Two other men who were 20 and 17 years old when the incident occurred have also been charged in the case.