Thirty-three-year-old Leopold, of Liverpool, is charged with the second-degree murder of Robertson, who was reported missing in April 2011. Leopold was arrested on April 26, 2011.
Closing arguments finished in Nova Scotia Supreme Court in Bridgewater on May 15.
The Crown made its closing statement first.
Addressing the jury in courtroom four, Crown attorney Leigh-Ann Bryson said the Crown summates it has proven beyond a reasonable doubt Leopold murdered Robertson.
“We summate that James Leopold was not acting while he was deprived of the powers of self-control. Rather, he was acting out of anger,” said Bryson. “He made a conscious decision, a conscious choice to end the life of Laura Robertson, to exert force upon her, for four to five minutes.”
Following the Crown’s address, defence lawyer Chris Manning addressed the jury to give the defence’s closing statement.
“Did you really think that when you listened to that statement to the police, did any of you really think he was holding back? Did any of you really think he was lying? Or did you think you were getting the raw, straightforward goods?” asked Manning.
“He was telling you exactly what he knew about that event, and I suggest to you, that’s what he did.”
Manning added the jury could not have heard a more “frank, honest and explicit” account by Leopold.
“Mr. Leopold did not commit murder. He reacted to a horrendous act,” said Manning. “He reacted immediately without thought of consequence and reacted out of excruciating pain and surprise.”
Though the act caused Robertson’s death, Manning said the act was not intentional by Leopold.
“I ask you to make your deliberations, to consider your verdict and return a verdict of not guilty of murder,” said Manning in closing.
Jury deliberations are set to begin on May 16 following instructions from Justice Kevin Coady.