Woman charged in Shoppers fatal stabbing fires her lawyers

By News staff and The Canadian Press

The woman accused in a fatal stabbing at a Shoppers Drug Mart last December has fired her lawyers, as a report on her mental health was submitted in court.

The last time 40-year-old Rohinie Bisesar was in court, the judge ordered her to undergo a mental health assessment at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.

Bisesar was back at Old City Hall on Wednesday, but other details of the hearing are under a publication ban.

Her former lawyer, Calvin Barry, had brought on defence lawyer Bob Richardson, who represented Richard Kachkar, but after much discussion, she fired him too.

“People can be unrepresented despite mental illnesses looming, speaking generally. If somebody wants to discharge you, then that’s their prerogative,” Barry said outside the courthouse.

The psychiatric report was submitted to the court, but it has not been dealt with yet. Once the assessment is revealed, the court will decide if she is fit to continue the trial process. Since her arrest in December, she hasn’t had a bail hearing.

Later Wednesday, it was confirmed that Bisesar had retained a new lawyer and the hearing to ascertain her fitness will resume on Thursday.

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Bisesar is charged with first-degree murder in the death of 28-year-old Rosemarie Junor.

Junor, a newlywed medical technician, was stabbed at a Shoppers Drug Mart at 66 Wellington St. W., in the underground PATH system, just before 3 p.m. on Dec. 11. She died five days later in hospital.

Bisesar was originally charged with attempted murder, but that was upgraded to second-degree murder and eventually to first-degree murder in February.

Last month, Barry said Bisesar had been seen by a psychiatrist in jail since her arrest and her fitness to participate in her case was not an issue until recent court appearances.

“She started exhibiting bizarre behaviour in open court, talking over the judge,” he explained. “We now have some concerns, as does the judge, as does the prosecutor, as to her fitness because of the rants.”

Last month, Bisesar was also admitted to hospital for a week under the Mental Health Act after exhibiting troubling behaviour at the detention centre she’s being held at, Barry said.

(Click here to watch the video on mobile.)

With files from Marianne Boucher

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