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B.C. woman accused in court stabbing attacked in jail

Catherine Shen is charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, assault with a weapon and possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose.
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The case has been put on hold for two weeks while Catherine Shen gets surgery on her hand.

The trial of a woman accused of a stabbing in a B.C. Supreme Court hearing room has been delayed after the woman was attacked in jail July 4.

Qi Qi Shen, also known as Catherine Shen, is charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, assault with a weapon and possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose in connection with a May 25, 2021 incident at the Vancouver Law Courts.

Court documents say the victim in the alleged assault is Jing Lu.

The women have reportedly been online rivals for years and have been feuding personally and legally.

Vancouver provincial court Judge Kathryn Denhoff heard of the attack July 5 and expressed concern that undue stress not be put on Shen through continuing to participate in the case while she awaits surgery on her injured hand this week.

“I’m sure she’s probably still a bit in shock,” Denhoff said.

The case has been put on hold for two weeks pending the surgery.

“I want to ensure Ms. Shen is in top form to participate in these proceedings,” Denhoff said.

Crown prosecutor Jacinta Lawton had anticipated calling several witnesses prior to closing her case before defence lawyer Scott Wright began his.

Denhoff heard there would be a defence of not criminally responsible due to a mental disorder. Several psychiatrists are expected to testify.

The case stems from an incident in a court hearing room. Sheriffs were called to a panic button and found two women on the ground, one of them with multiple injuries, the other in handcuffs.

“Massive blood loss and blood on the ground,” Deputy Sheriff Chris Zanotto testified April 6 in the trial.

Nearby were a knife and a hammer, he told Denhoff.

Deputy Sheriff Kulvinder Bagri, a first-aid attendant, checked to see if the injured woman was conscious and breathing. He found lacerations and puncture wounds.

He said she did not regain consciousness in the 15 to 20 minutes before emergency health services arrived.

Lawton has told Denhoff the Crown was seeking assessments to be done on Shen and the case may proceed on the premise that Shen could be considered not criminally responsible for her actions.

The inquiry would be to see if Shen has the mental capacity to form the criminal intent to perform the acts of which she is accused.

jhainsworth@glaciermedia.ca

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