Mark Evans, lawyer for accused Richard Lowes, briefly appeared before Justice of the Peace R.J. Whalen via Zoom in a Welland courtroom last Friday, November 25. He told the court that he had arranged a Crown pre-trial meeting (CPT) late last week, and that the Crown was soliciting input from the complainants in the case with respect to what was discussed in the CPT.
Evans said that he was “hopeful that it would lead to a resolution,” and asked for a new court date on December 23. Justice Whalen allowed the request.
November 25 was the 23rd proceeding in the matter, which has now been 20 months before the courts.
In March of 2021, Lowes, 66, was charged with three counts of sexual assault and one count of sexual interference with a person under the age of 16. He owns and operates the Country Corner Market, at Quaker Road and Line Avenue in Fonthill, and has supported numerous charitable causes in Pelham and Niagara with food donations in the past. Lowes was named the 2008 Fonthill and District Kinsmen Club’s Citizen of the Year.
A publication ban prohibits the disclosure of any information about the alleged victims that may lead to their identification.