Matthew Vincent Raymond, charged with four counts of first degree murder, arrives at provincial court in Fredericton on Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

Security tight as man charged in Fredericton shootings appears in court

Two city police officers were among four people who died in a shooting in a residential area on the city’s north side.

A man accused of killing two Fredericton police officers and two civilians arrived for an court appearance Monday morning wearing orange jail clothing and surrounded by sheriffs officers.

Matthew Vincent Raymond, 48, was scheduled to face four counts of murder in the deaths of Const. Sara Burns, Const. Robb Costello, Donnie Robichaud and Bobbie Lee Wright.

The court appearance was the first time the media has been able to provide visual images of Raymond, other than a fuzzy yearbook picture from his teenaged years.

Raymond looked down at the ground as he slowly emerged from a sheriff’s van, but observers noted he is slim, has short hair, is balding and has a greying beard.

Members of the victims’ families were among about 70 people assembled in the packed courtroom for his appearance.

Regional Sheriff George Oram cautioned everyone in the court against any outbursts.

Security at the courthouse was tight, and a large section of parking lot was cordoned off, with sheriffs’ vehicles used to block some of the view of the courthouse entrance where Raymond was brought in.

Provincial court Judge Julian Dickson was expected to preside.

Related: ‘We will not forget:’ Thousands attend funeral fallen Fredericton officers

Related: Gun used in Fredericton killings is legal, man had licence

The police officers and civilians were gunned down Aug. 10 outside an apartment complex in the New Brunswick capital.

Costello, 45, was a 20-year police veteran with four children, while Burns, 43, had been an officer for two years and was married with three children.

Robichaud, 42, had three children and had recently entered into a relationship with 32-year-old Wright when they were killed.

Thousands of police officers and first responders from across the continent travelled to Fredericton last Saturday to attend a regimental funeral for Burns and Costello.

Friends and acquaintances of Raymond have offered varying memories of the accused murderer.

Some have recalled how he retreated for long periods of time into video games, while others recall a pleasant supermarket co-worker.

Recent accounts describe an increasingly isolated loner who was ejected from a bicycle shop and a cafe for erratic behaviour.

The Canadian Press

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