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Accused in Victoria sex worker assaults to select mode of trial

The Langford man accused of assaulting and robbing two Victoria sex workers will choose next month how he wants to be tried in court.

Edward Charles Burman, 31, was scheduled to appear in provincial court in Victoria on Thursday to decide whether he wants to be tried by a provincial court judge, a Supreme Court of B.C. judge or by supreme court judge and jury.

However, his appearance was cancelled. His next court date is March 22.

Burman faces five charges after police say they linked the accused to separate assaults on two female sex workers in Victoria.

The 31-year-old was arrested Jan. 12 following a Victoria police investigation into allegations made by a 30-year-old street sex worker who said she was violently sexually assaulted and robbed on Feb. 19, 2011 in the 3000-block of Douglas St.

Burman was charged with assault causing bodily harm, sexual assault causing bodily harm and robbery.

After the arrest, Victoria officers announced they had matched DNA from that case with forensic evidence in an unsolved December 2009 file in which another Victoria sex worker reported she had been assaulted and robbed.

While in custody, Burman was charged on Jan. 17 with a second round of offences, including aggravated assault and robbery.

The day he made bail and was released from the Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre on Jan. 27, Burman was ordered by provincial court Judge Susan Wishart to not enter a red zone in Victoria. He was also ordered to not have contact with two individuals and not be in the company of a sex worker.

 

emccracken@vicnews.com

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