A charge of uttering threats against Halifax lawyer Lyle Howe has been dropped.

It was alleged Howe confronted William James Lewis in the Halifax Provincial Courthouse and told him to watch what he said about him or he would have someone harm him at the Dartmouth jail.

That’s said to have happened minutes after the man fired Howe and suggested he’d be filing a complaint against him.

“In reviewing all of the totality of the evidence, I came to the determination that there was not a realistic prospect of conviction and it was our obligation in those circumstances to not proceed with the prosecution,” said Crown Attorney Andre Arseneau.

Defence lawyer Mike Taylor says a videotape of the incident showed Howe did nothing wrong.

“He’s accused of reaching through the bars and swinging at the complainant and uttering a threat towards him,” Taylor explains. “The threat wouldn’t have shown up on the video because it’s not audio taped but it clearly would have shown that he had reached through the bars a took a swing at this person. It just didn’t happen based on what I’ve been shown.”

Taylor calls the accuser a disgruntled client.

“He’s someone who has a history of fraud and fraud related offences and that was the only evidence of this offence,” says Taylor. “There was absolutely nothing corroborative in any other sense.”

Howe says people might have questions about how efficiently and effectively the criminal justice system worked in this case, “considering that there was a major piece of corroborating evidence, namely a video, which can completely exonerate an accused, and it still went to trial.”

Howe adds there’s also now the potential for private prosecution against his accuser.

“I never said definitively whether that’s going to happen, but it’s possible for private prosecution against the complainant in the circumstances and potential civil remedies, namely a lawsuit against him,” he says.

He also wonders if the crown will file charges, saying it was pretty clear Lewis wasted the time of police, the court, and the Crown.

Howe is still facing sexual assault charges in a separate incident. That trial starts May 30th.