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UPDATE: Judge orders new mental health assessment in P.E.I. infanticide case

Inside a Provincial Court room in Charlottetown. - File
Inside a provincial court room in Charlottetown. - File

A P.E.I. woman facing infanticide charges will be back in court next month after a judge issued a new order to get a mental health assessment report.

Shannon Dawn Rayner.
Shannon Dawn Rayner.

Shannon Dawn Rayner made a brief appearance Wednesday, Feb. 6 before Judge John Douglas in provincial court in Charlottetown.

She is facing two charges of infanticide for alleged offences dating back to 2014 and 2016.

Rayner also faces two counts of failing to seek assistance in child birth and two counts of disposing of a child’s body with intent to conceal the fact it had been delivered.

The police allege Rayner put the bodies of two infants in bags before placing them in a waste bin.

Douglas ordered a mental health assessment in November 2018, but later granted a 30-day extension because it wouldn’t be completed on time.

During Wednesday’s court appearance, Douglas said the East Coast Forensic Hospital has not provided the assessment report.

Douglas said he sent a letter to the hospital saying he can’t grant another extension.

All of the necessary interviews for the assessment have been completed, but the report hasn’t been prepared.

Douglas wondered during Wednesday’s proceedings if it would help to make a new order for an assessment.

Defence lawyer Thane MacEachern told the court Rayner said she was told the report wouldn’t be completed until around the end of February.

Douglas adjourned the matter until March 5 and said he would do a new order to have a report prepared by then.


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