TORONTO, Ontario, December 14, 2011 ( – Prosecutors finally offered up disclosure – documents related to the case against her – when Mary Wagner made an appearance at the College Park courthouse in downtown Toronto on Tuesday.

Wagner has been imprisoned since November 8, when she was charged with mischief and two counts of failing to comply with a probation order in connection with her arrest at the Bloor West Village “Women’s Clinic” abortion site. She has declined to accept bail since then because of conditions that include staying away from so-called women’s clinics and consequently will spend the Christmas season imprisoned.


A Crown attorney handed to Wagner in the prisoner’s box 38 pages of documents that included police notes and witness statements. Wagner will use the documents in her defence, as she is intending to plead not guilty and represent herself. As at a previous hearing, Judge Feroza Bhabha urged her to consider retaining counsel and pursue legal aid, but Wagner replied it was not her intention to so. Nonetheless, Wagner was remanded to January 10 at 10 a.m. in Room 504 of the College Park courthouse to confirm the status of her representation. The actual trial will take place February 28 and 29 in Room 506 at College Park.

There was no explanation of why disclosure took so long to provide – over one month. Of significance is the fact that prosecutors intend to use an “assigned Crown” in the case, which indicates they are giving it special attention. Sarah Gray handled an earlier hearing, but it was stated in court that Lara Crawford will be taking it over.

Gray said previously the Crown would be seeking a 4-6 month jail term, in addition to probation orders. She added prosecutors will be seeking “victim input” from people who were “harassed” by Wagner at the abortion site and they anticipate calling two arresting police officers and an abortion site employee as witnesses.

The harsh penalty being sought against Wagner stood in stark contrast to the sentence of another man who appeared in court a few minutes before her. He was convicted for endangering many lives after causing an accident by racing down the busy Gardiner Expressway in Toronto at 160 km/h. He left the court smiling after escaping a jail sentence with just a $1,000 fine and a few months of driving restrictions.

Wagner appeared well when she appeared in the prisoner’s box clad in green coveralls and smiled at a handful of supporters seated in the public gallery. Friend Leeda Crawford said she visited Wagner in jail and found her always thinking about other prisoners and some of their serious issues. In one case, she counseled an inmate who was six weeks’ pregnant, referring her to the Sisters of Life. In another, she helped an inmate obtain legal advice.


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