|Richard Kachkar, 46, formerly of St. Catharines, Ont., has been charged with murder in the death of Toronto police Sgt. Ryan Russell, who was killed when hit by a stolen snowplow. (Facebook photo)
ST. CATHARINES, ONT. - A jury panel of several hundred people is being assembled for the trial of accused cop killer Richard Kachkar, 46.
In court Monday in Toronto, Kachkar, who is from St. Catharines, pleaded not guilty to a charge of first-degree murder in connection with the Jan. 12, 2011, snowplow death of Sgt. Ryan Russell.
Russell, 35, was an 11-year Toronto Police Services veteran. He leaves behind a wife and a young son.
Kachkar checked into the Good Shepherd shelter in Toronto around 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 11, 2011, after arriving in Toronto on a bus from St. Catharines.
Police allege he stole a snowplow downtown, then drove recklessly through city streets, eventually striking and killing Russell.
Once the jury is chosen, the prosecution will open its case against Kachkar.
The high-profile trial is expected to last three months.