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Jury selection begins in trial of man charged in death of police officer

Last Updated Nov 20, 2017 at 4:40 pm EDT

Christopher Calvin Garnier, charged with second-degree murder in the death of Truro police officer Const. Catherine Campbell, arrives at Nova Supreme Court for the start of his trial in Halifax on Monday, Nov. 20, 2017. The Canadian Press/Andrew Vaughan

HALIFAX – Hundreds of people packed a Halifax courthouse Monday as jury selection in the trial of a Nova Scotia man accused of killing an off-duty police officer got underway.

Christopher Calvin Garnier, 29, is charged in the death of Truro police Const. Catherine Campbell, 36.

“The offences alleged are second-degree murder and improperly interfering with human remains. The deceased was an off-duty police officer,” Nova Scotia Supreme Court Justice Joshua Arnold told two packed courtrooms of potential jurors.

Campbell’s remains were found near Halifax’s Macdonald Bridge in September 2015.

Dressed in a black suit, Garnier sat quietly at a bench with defence lawyer Joel Pink during the jury selection process Monday.

He has pleaded not guilty to both charges.

Prospective jurors are questioned and selected until a panel is picked.

On Monday, five jurors — three women and two men — were selected. Jury selection will resume Tuesday.

Crown attorneys Christine Driscoll and Carla Ball are prosecuting the case.

Twenty-three days have been set aside for the trial.