WOODSTOCK: A second attempt at finding a jury for a murder trial has again ended in a mistrial. Kurt Andrew Hudnut, 28, and James Andrew Melanson, 21, are charged with first-degree murder in the death of Wayne Rattray in Tilley. The jury selection process began on Monday morning at the community room of the Ayr Motor Centre in Woodstock.
However, by Monday night only 10 jurors had been selected out of the 187 potential jurors that showed up, which meant the trial could not proceed. Details on how the trial will continue were discussed in court on Tuesday, however, a publication ban on all of those details prevents them from being published.
The trial for Hudnut and Melanson was originally scheduled to begin on Oct. 23, but Justice Frederick Ferguson declared a mistrial after jury selection failed to find enough jurors who understood both French and English. A third man, Luke Frank Ellick, 28, of Three Brooks, near Plaster Rock, is also charged in Rattray’s murder but will be tried separately.
RCMP reported Rattray missing from his Tilley home on March 2. 2016. His house and truck were destroyed by fire in separate incidents. Police described both fires as suspected arson. Rattray’s body was later discovered in the Renous area.