PICTOU – Charges have been dropped against a Pictou County doctor who allegedly grabbed and destroyed a fake ballot box from the back of a motorcycle prior to a parade.
Dr. Gordon Young will not have to answer to a charge of mischief under $5,000 for allegedly taking the cardboard box and destroying it. The box was tied to the back of a motorcycle driven by Alexander MacKenzie, who calls himself the Ballot Box Bandit. MacKenzie has been charged and convicted several times of stealing ballot boxes during elections. His most recent conviction included some jail time.
MacKenzie had made an appearance in the Westville Canada Day Parade on July 1 on his bike with the fake ballot box tied to the back and a Canadian flag being dragged behind. He also had a sign declaring he was a prisoner of war.
The Pictou Landing man who was once a county councillor has been protesting a $35 million settlement between the nearby Pictou Landing First Nations Reserve and the federal department of Indian and Northern Affairs several years ago. The band had sued the department for failing to protect their interests and rights with the neighbouring body of water, Boat Harbour, was turned into a effluent treatment plant for then Scott Maritimes pulp mill in Abercrombie Point.
In an earlier interview after the charges were laid, Young said he planned to plead not guilty but added he was bothered that his band followed MacKenzie's flag-dragging entry in the Westville parade. Young's band took part in the Pictou Lobster Carnival Parade the following week when the incident occurred.
This morning in provincial court, the Crown announced the charge would be dropped against Young due to no public interest.
More details to follow.