Man. teen who killed mother, five-year-old sister gets youth sentence

Date: 2010-07-28

BRANDON SUN JULY 28, 2010

BRANDON, Man. — A teenage boy from Manitoba who shot and killed his adoptive mother and his five-year-old stepsister has been sentenced as a youth.

Justice Robert Cummings read his decision at Brandon Court of Queen's Bench on Wednesday, sentencing the now-17-year-old boy to four years in custody and three years of supervision in the community.

The youth had pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree murder. He was 14 at the time of the shocking killings, which took place at his family home in St. Lazare, about 330 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg, in August 2007.

The teenager had tearfully told the court he snapped and shot his mother after suffering years of physical abuse at her hands.

On the day of the shooting, he said, his mother was scolding him for not doing his yard work properly. She said she dragged him by his hair, called him a liar, threatened to send him back to Manitoba Child and Family Services and began to hit him.

He said he crawled to his parents' bedroom and, while barring the door with his feet, managed to grab the rifle from under the bed, reached into a dresser drawer for ammunition and loaded the gun.

He said his mother then flung the door open but ran for the kitchen after she spotted the rifle. He was afraid she was going to grab a knife, he said.

"That's when it happened," he told the court.

The Crown questioned the teen's version of events, and pointed to the fact he had shot his five-year-old stepsister four times, twice in the head.

His mother was shot in the side of the head three times.

The teenage killer cannot be identified.

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