Charges against one of the two men allegedly involved in the attack on Chris Ball in downtown Fort St. John have been upgraded to include manslaughter.
The court registry confirms that Prince George resident Joel Christopher Marchand, 29, originally charged with aggravated assault and assault causing bodily harm, had his charges upgraded to manslaughter in addition to the assault causing bodily harm charge.
John Ball, the victim’s brother, travelled to Fort St. John from his home in Calgary to witness the proceedings.
“We’re really pleased that they’ve upgraded the charges. We were really worried about the fact that this guy had (only) an assault charge,” Ball said.
“As far as I’m concerned nothing is enough for what this guy has done but I guess I’ve got to be reasonable.”
Willie Ted Metcalfe and Marchand have both chosen trial by judge and jury for their trials, which stem from the assault and subsequent death of Chris Ball in a late July altercation at 100th Ave and 100th Street in Fort St. John.
Ball suffered a severe brain injury resulting in a coma. He was taken off life support 11 days later at an Edmonton hospital.
Marchand is in custody Prince George and Metcalfe, who faces the lesser charges, is out on $20,000 bail.
The trial continues.