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Thread: What happened at Robert James Iverson's murder trial?

  1. #1

    Default What happened at Robert James Iverson's murder trial?

    As most of you will recall, Bob was charged Dec '10 with murdering Sherry Sim in June '10

    Strangely, there has never been any published report on the disposition of the case or the results of a trial. All the newspapers just dropped the story.

    I'm hoping that one of the readers here will have been witness to the proceeding and can enlighten the rest of us.

  2. #2


    Here we go - Preliminary hearing into killing of Cheryl Sim is underway this week
    The inquiry was set to start today and continue this week and into next.

    The hearing was delayed briefly this morning as Iverson's counsel, Nanaimo lawyer Christopher Churchill, was reportedly conferring with his client.


  3. #3



    Story in today's Nanaimo Bulletin;

    Preliminary inquiry underway in murder case

    By Jenn McGarrigle - Nanaimo News Bulletin
    Published: March 28, 2012 8:00 AM
    Updated: March 28, 2012 8:22 AM

    A man charged with murder following the June 2010 killing of a Nanaimo woman is in court this week for a preliminary inquiry.

    Robert James Iverson is charged with first degree murder in the death of Cheryl Lynn Sim.

    Sim's body was discovered June 29, 2010, in a vacant lot near Barsby Park at the end of Prideaux Street. She was 53.

    Police charged Iverson in December 2010.

    Sim was well-known in Nanaimo's street community.

    The preliminary inquiry, which began Tuesday, is to determine if there is enough evidence to go to trial. It is scheduled to run this week and into next week

  4. #4


    Trial date set for accused in first-degree murder case in 2010 killing
    By Staff Writer - Nanaimo News Bulletin
    Published: February 16, 2013 12:00 PM
    A man charged with murder following the June 2010 killing of a Nanaimo woman will stand trial next fall.

    Robert James Iverson is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Cheryl Lynn Sim.

    A preliminary inquiry to determine if there is enough evidence to go to trial was held over several days in March, April and May, and last June, Iverson was ordered to stand trial in B.C. Supreme Court.

    He was back in court Feb. 13 to fix a date for trial.

    Six weeks are set aside for Iverson’s trial by judge and jury, beginning Sept. 30 and ending Nov. 8. Jury selection takes place the first day of the trial.

    Sim’s body was discovered June 29, 2010, in a vacant lot near Barsby Park at the end of Prideaux Street.

    She was 53 and well-known in Nanaimo’s street community.

    Police charged Iverson in December 2010.


  5. #5

    Default Law and Justice

    The defendant's lawyer is being really shrewd. He's playing for time. People who may be called as witnesses have had a long time to wait, and memories fade with time. Small details that may swing the case may have been forgotten. The late Ms. Sim apparently had connections with the street people in Nanaimo, and they move around more than the average setttled population. Some of them may have moved and may be hard to find so there may be gaps in evidence which the defence lawyer can use to his advantage.

    Another factor is that the defendant and the lawyer have opted for trial by jury. In a case like this, jurors' emotions become involved, no matter how hard they try to consider only the facts introduced in court. If I were charged with something like this, I'd opt for trial by jury.

    In general, and not specifically referring to this case, law and justice are two concepts which sometimes don't meet in court.

    Whoever this lawyer is, he's playing this case in exactly the right way. He's going to go for the concept "innocent unless proven guilty without any doubt". This guy's good, like it or not.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008

    Default Robert James Iverson Trial - murder of Cheryl Lynn Sim

    The trial may last from Sept 30 to around Nov 8-15

    Nanaimo Courthouse Supreme Court Room 305 10:00am [session runs from 10am-12pm & 2pm-4pm Monday to Friday]

    Day 1 included Crime Scene Video

    Day 2 included Crime Scene Pictures & photos of Robert Iverson

    Day 3 to include 2 hours of police audio etc

    *around 30 witnesses to be called to the stand throughout the trial

  7. #7


    Bob is crazy, ask anyone who knows him. Dangerous too. Still he is my friend, as was Sherry.

    Bob needs supervision. The rest of us need protection from him. Nothing will bring back our Sherry. A life in prison is not going to help anyone.


    A Nanaimo man who remained silent, staring at the wall or out the window while representing himself on a charge of first-degree murder has been found fit to stand trial.

    Robert James Iverson was arrested on June 30, 2010, and charged with the first-degree murder of Cheryl Sim, 53, whose body was found in a shopping cart behind a downtown Nanaimo hotel a day earlier.

    Iverson, who has a long history with the criminal- justice system and an extensive medical history of head injuries and liver failure, chose to represent himself in a judge-alone trial that began in Nanaimo in September 2013.

    In a decision posted online this week, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Robert Punnett described the case, which is now scheduled to continue on June 23, as unique and unusual. When the trial got underway last fall, Iverson did not participate in the proceedings.

    “He refused to communicate with the court, standing mute and either staring at the court or out the window,” Punnett noted.

    Iverson did look at witnesses entering and leaving the courtroom. He also accepted copies of the exhibits, but dropped them onto his bench seat in the prisoner’s box without looking at them.

    “On at least one occasion, when asked to respond by the court, he turned his back on the court and remained standing, facing the back wall of the court room,” said Punnett.

    Iverson’s behaviour raised the question of whether he was fit to stand trial. Iverson had been in segregation for a year. Although he spoke to some guards, Iverson had refused to be assessed by the psychologists who were supposed to meet with him every 30 days.

    Iverson had also lost weight and, in contrast to his well-groomed appearance at his preliminary inquiry, he now appeared unkempt.

    On Oct. 7, 2013, Punnett ordered Iverson to undergo a five-day fitness assessment. However, Iverson refused to co-operate and the psychiatrist could not conclude he was unfit to stand trial.

    The trial continued. On Oct. 16, 2013, Punnett appointed defence lawyer Albert King to represent Iverson during a 60-day fitness assessment at the Forensic Psychiatric Hospital.

    Again, Iverson refused to talk to the forensic psychiatrist, Dr. LeeAnne Meldrum, or to participate in any laboratory or psychological testing. In the end, Meldrum was unable to provide a conclusive opinion on Iverson’s fitness to stand trial.

    The Crown suggested continuing the trial, recognizing that Iverson might need to be assessed later.

    In his submissions on behalf of Iverson, King said it’s clear from Meldrum’s evidence that Iverson was not faking mental illness.

    “He is one very sick man,” said King.

    He argued that the criminal-justice system had nothing to lose by finding Iverson unfit. A finding of unfitness is not an acquittal. He could later be found fit and the trial could resume.

    “There is no societal purpose in sending a man to prison for life, if on a very balanced view of his mental capacity, he is not, in any way, shape or form participating in the process,” King told Iverson’s fitness hearing.

    However, Punnett noted that during the trial, Iverson co-operated with the sheriffs and followed their directions, but ignored lawyers in the courtroom. He found Iverson socialized with other patients and talked to nursing staff at Forensic Psychiatric Hospital, but refused to talk to Meldrum.

    He also noted that Iverson responded to a sheriff’s offer of water, but ignored the same offer from the lawyer appointed by the court to assist him at trial.

    There was no evidence to indicate Iverson is not aware of what he is charged with, Punnett said. He also appears to understand what is occurring in the courtroom.

    “I note that it is only after he decided to represent himself that he became unresponsive,” said Punnett. “He may well have decided to defend himself by remaining mute, leaving the Crown to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.”

    Iverson’s silence is more likely wilful than a product of mental disorder, said Punnett, who concluded — “although not without significant reservations” — that Iverson is fit to stand trial.


    Copyright Times Colonist

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