One of two St. John’s men accused of sexually abusing a dozen young males for decades is scheduled to have his trial begin this summer.
Tony Humby, 63, and Bruce Escott, 81, appeared in court via video link from prison this morning — Humby from Her Majesty’s Penitentiary and Escott from Bishop’s Falls Correctional Centre.
Crown prosecutor Deidre Badcock told Judge Rolf Pritchard that after discussions with Humby’s lawyer, Stephen Orr, and court staff, it was agreed Humby’s trial would begin July 2. Seven weeks have been reserved.
Humby faces 33 charges, including sexual assault, invitation to sexual touching, sexual interference and sexual exploitation.
The charges involve 12 complainants, including 10 youth and two young adults.
The offences are believed to have happened between 2004 and 2022.
Escott’s case, meanwhile, has yet to be finalized. He faces 14 similar sex-related charges, but has yet to enter pleas. Badcock said she and Escott’s lawyer, Mackenzie Hughes, who appeared in court today by telephone, will have discussions in the next few weeks to determine the next step.
Since the cases are joined, the men would be tried together. That is, unless Escott opts to have his case severed from Humby’s or decides to plead guilty.
Escott’s case will be called back to court on March 1 for a status update.
Humby and Escott have been in custody since April. It’s alleged that the men — who were neighbours on Hussey Drive in the east end of the capital city — worked together to sexually abuse and exploit teenaged boys and young men since the early 2000s.