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Judge begins charge to jury at Kachkar’s murder trial

The judge at the trial of accused Toronto cop killer Richard Kachkar began delivering his instructions to the jury on Friday after the Crown completed its closing arguments.

The charge to the jury is expected to continue into Monday.

Kachkar, 46, is accused of first-degree murder in the death of Sgt. Ryan Russell, 35. He was struck down by a stolen snowplow on Jan. 12, 2011.

Below is live coverage from CityNews reporter Cynthia Mulligan, who is covering the trial.

The Crown argued Kachkar intended to kill Russell when he hit him with the snowplow.

On Friday, Crown attorney Christine McGoey claims Kachkar “engineered” the events that led to Russell’s death.

“His actions leading up to the [murder] show an intention to do great harm to Russell,” she said.

McGoey told the court Kachkar saw the police car with its lights flashing and “he made it clear he would not stop for police.”

The jury must determine Kachkar’s state of mind at the time of the officer’s murder. The court has heard from forensic psychiatrists who testified about the complexity of Kachkar’s case and the difficulty in diagnosing him.

At the start of the trial, Justice Ian MacDonnell told the jury there is no doubt Kachkar was operating the plow that killed Ryan. The jurors must determine whether he was fully aware of his actions at the time.

Kachkar has pleaded not guilty to the charge against him.

In his closing, defence lawyer Bob Richardson said Kachkar had completely lost touch with reality when he hit Russell.

“He lacked capacity to form criminal intent,” Richardson said Thursday.

“He wasn’t operating in our world.”

McGoey didn’t dispute Kachkar was experiencing a low point in his life, with regard to his family and money matters. She said he is a man “prone to anger and bitterness.”

“We will never know if he wanted Russell to kill him,” she said.

“He put Russell in the position of kill or be killed and Russell was killed.”

Read our full coverage of the Kachkar trial

With files from Marianne Boucher and The Canadian Press