Brittain's wife vandalized

The ex-wife of accused quadruple murderer John Brittain has had her house vandalized to the tune of $10,000 in damages, Penticton court heard Wednesday morning. 

Brittain's counsel, Paul McMurray, was arguing against a continued order of no-contact between John Brittain and his ex Katherine Brittain, calling her "isolated," "emotionally fragile," " a prisoner in her own home" and a target in the community. 

He said that a few weeks ago, Katherine's home was vandalized, and that both an insurance claim and criminal charges are pending. He said John is aware of the incident, he explained, and wants to reach out to his ex with whom he was still close at the time of the killings. 

"A phone call to offer words of support is not out of order," McMurray said. 

Crown counsel disagreed, reiterating the claim they have been making at each of John Brittain's last three court dates: Katherine may be called as a witness, and therefore any contact could taint her testimony. 

"Once the communication happens it's too late, even if it's monitored," said Crown lawyer Andrew Vandersluys. 

The judge agreed and the no-contact order was upheld, and will continue until John Brittain's next court appearance Aug. 14. 

Crown said that between now and that time, another considerable chunk of discovery will be turned over to the defence. They may be presenting a statement of issues and witnesses on that date as well. 

Brittain is accused in the shooting deaths of Susan and Barry Wonch, Rudi Winter and Darlene Knippelberg on April 15.

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