In case you missed it, here's what happened in Montreal on Jan. 18

Signs warn pedestrians to stay clear of the ice on Beaver Lake on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018. Pierre Obendrauf / Montreal Gazette

A look at the day’s events in and around Montreal:

Beaver Lake now too deep to be used safely as a skating rink: Plante

Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante confirmed Thursday that recent excavation work on Beaver Lake in Mount Royal Park has rendered the basin too deep to be used safely as a skating rink, so the tradition of skating on it is probably a thing of the past.

While the smaller, refrigerated rink beside Beaver Lake remains open to skaters, Beaver Lake itself, which has been a popular skating destination for Montrealers and tourists since the 1930s, has not reopened for skating this winter and will most probably remain closed for good.

Plante was asked about the issue at a press conference Thursday at city hall, where she had just wrapped up a meeting with Premier Philippe Couillard.

“I’m disappointed because I skated there,” Plante told reporters, before being interrupted by Couillard, who chimed in: “I skated there, too, when I was a kid.”

“At this point this is a security issue because it’s pretty (deep), so we have to make sure that there are no accidents there,” Plante said.

City spokesperson Anik de Repentigny explained that renovations in 2012 to deal with drainage issues, restore the walls and add a waterfall feature to the site has resulted in deeper water in the basin, as deep as seven metres in some places. 

Montreal doesn’t make short list for Amazon’s HQ2

Toronto — and 19 other North American cities — may have a shot at being the site for Amazon’s second headquarters, but Montreal didn’t make the list.

Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante said she is disappointed the city didn’t make it to the short list. But she told reporters at city hall that the work that was done to try to attract Amazon can be used to attract other businesses to Montreal.

Amazon announced Thursday that it had narrowed its list of potential homes for its second headquarters — as well as the 50,000 jobs and $5-billion investment that comes with it — to 20 cities.

Defence lawyer Dimitrios Strapatsas’s fate is in judge’s hands

A Quebec Court judge will decide next month whether Montreal defence lawyer Dimitrios Strapatsas will serve time behind bars for helping a killer in his attempts to intimidate a witness who was about to testify in his murder trial. 

On Thursday, prosecutor Jennifer Morin said Strapatsas has offered the Court no signs of having been rehabilitated nor has he shown any remorse since he was convicted, in October, of obstructing justice. Strapatsas, 44, was found guilty of handing over $200 to a woman who was part of a chain of people used by John Boulachanis to have a video uploaded on to YouTube with the intention of intimidating a police informant from testifying at Boulachanis’s murder trial. 

The video was a sworn statement the informant had given to police detailing how Boulachanis had made incriminating statements during conversations while both were detained at the same detention centre. The Crown’s theory was that Boulachanis wanted other detainees to know the man, whose name cannot be published, was a snitch. Strapatsas, who was friends with Boulachanis since they were teenagers, paid a woman who helped upload the video to the video-sharing website. Despite the efforts made to intimidate the witness in 2014, the man eventually testified at Boulachanis’s trial and he was convicted of first-degree murder in December 2016. 

all right reserved for Montreal Gazette

Get the latest news delivered to your inbox

Follow us on social media networks

NEXT R. Kelly hits back at the Time's Up campaign's call for a boycott of his music