APTN National News
Three children are expected to testify during the trial of Onion Lake Chief Wallace Fox who is facing multiple charges in relation to an alleged domestic assault incident which occurred in a home on the oil-rich Saskatchewan First Nation.
Fox has pleaded not guilty to charges of assault, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose related to the use of a knife, and uttering threats to damage property.
A court official with the Lloydminster, Sask., provincial court said Fox’s trial is scheduled for two days beginning on June 29.
The Meridian Booster, a newspaper in Lloydminster, reported that Fox’s lawyer wanted to push the trial date to September.
The alleged victim in the incident, Vicki Monague, confirmed to APTN National News that the Crown will be calling her along with her three children, who will be aged 12, 13 and 14 by the time the trial begins, to testify against Fox.
“We decided together as a family that we are completely confident in the case,” said Monague, in an interview Wednesday. “We are looking forward to the opportunity to broadcast publicly our story in the courtroom to let everyone know what we lived through.”
Monague said she and her children would be in Lloydminster for the trial.
Fox has refused to be interviewed by APTN since the network first broke the news that he was under investigation for alleged domestic assault.
The RCMP arrested Fox mere days after Onion Lake won a Federal Court case against Ottawa over the First Nation Transparency Act which required bands to post financial statements online, including the pay of chief and councillors.
The Liberal federal government has since halted all court cases against First Nations not in compliance with the law.
The RCMP has also launched a separate investigation into the way Mounties stationed in Onion Lake initially handled Monague’s complaint. That investigation is ongoing.
Fox rose to national prominence during the height of the Idle No More movement. He was one of the chiefs who marched into Centre Block on Parliament Hill in the fall of 2012 demanding an audience with then prime minister Stephen Harper.
He was also one of the leaders who openly challenged former Assembly of First Nations national chief Shawn Atleo before the controversial Jan. 11, 2013, meeting with Harper while Idle No More protests flooded the downtown streets of Ottawa.
Fox has been chief of Onion Lake since the 1980s. He was first elected to council at age 21 in 1983. Three years later, he was elected chief of oil-rich community.
He’s expected to resign his post this summer. There is a movement in the community that is pushing for his ouster.
Onion Lake has about 5,000 band members and sits about 50 kilometres north of Lloydminster, Alta., on the Saskatchewan-Alberta border.