A man arrested following an incident on Parliament Hill is being ordered to have a psychological exam after a raucous court appearance that saw him swear at a judge and demand his lawyer be fired.
Jesse Mooney, seeming angry and agitated, was in court via video link Tuesday related to four charges stemming from an alleged altercation on Sunday, the day before he was arrested on the Hill.
Ottawa police say a man hit a pedestrian with a knife on the weekend after an argument on a walking path in the city’s south end.
On Monday, parliamentary security officers detained Mooney during the Changing of the Guard ceremony on Parliament Hill, where Canadian Armed Forces members perform an almost daily ceremony that has been a colourful summer tradition since 1959.
A video posted online showed several Mounties and parliamentary security officers pinning someone to the ground on the east lawn. Authorities say a small pocket knife was discovered nearby.
Mooney was handed over to Ottawa police who charged him with assault with a weapon, possession of a weapon, assault causing bodily harm and failure to comply with a probation order in relation to the Sunday events.
Ottawa police originally said Mooney would face two charges related to the Hill incident, but on Tuesday afternoon the force said it did not plan to lay them.
During the court hearing Tuesday morning, Mooney, 24, interrupted proceedings, saying he didn’t want his lawyer to represent him. He then went on to tell the judge that he didn’t need psychiatric help, spoke about wanting to get to a healthy weight to get on with his life and made claims about the government “bugging him” about his blood.
“All I want to do is speak to a doctor to explain my circumstances,” Mooney said.
Justice Matthew Webber told Mooney to stop talking in order to deal with the matter. When that didn’t work, the two began talking over one another.
“Please rise in front of me,” Mooney hollered into the camera. He then used a four-letter expletive to punctuate a subsequent demand that Webber use his hands to cover his face.
Mooney is scheduled to be at the Ottawa courthouse on Wednesday to meet with a court psychiatrist.
Jonathan Boss, a lawyer who represented Mooney during the hearing, later told reporters his client may have mental health issues.
“We have a strong suspicion that he does,” Boss said.
“I can’t comment on whether he has a diagnosis at this point, but it was for reasons, some of which you saw in court today, that really reflects our concerns and why we think it would be best for him to meet with a doctor.”