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Bystanders barred from aiding teen victim of fatal Saskatchewan beating: Crown – CP
by ahnationtalk on January 9, 201896 Views
Source: The Canadian Press
Jan 9, 2018
PRINCE ALBERT, Sask. _ Four men charged with second-degree murder in the beating of a 17-year-old northern Saskatchewan boy have pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
A total of seven people, including two youths, were initially charged with murder in the May 2015 death of Hilliard Sewap Jr. in Pelican Narrows.
Robbie Lambert Cree Custer, Cody Drake Custer, Trevor John Charles and Brandon Lee Matt McCallum, all in their 20s, entered the plea Monday prior to what was to have been a scheduled two-week trial in Prince Albert.
Charles was sentenced to five and a half years, both Custers got two and a half years and McCallum was given two years, but all sentences were reduced based on time already spent in custody.
A fifth man, Marcus Sewap, previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter and will be sentenced in Pelican Narrows on Feb. 6.
A trial for the two youths is scheduled for April.
Crown prosecutor Fran Atkinson told court that Sewap’s death arose from an ongoing dispute between two groups known in Pelican Narrows as the Long-Streeters and Bronxers.
Atkinson said the Long-Streeters were chasing members of the Bronxers around the community with pieces of lumber and other weapons when they isolated Sewap and inflicted the beating, which resulted in his death at the scene.
“Hilliard either was knocked down or tripped. He was surrounded,” said Atkinson as part of a sentencing agreement with the defence.
She said although the exact nature of each man’s involvement was difficult to determine, Charles was seen striking the teen with a collapsible police-style baton and bystanders were prevented from coming to his aid.
Atkinson noted the assault happened the day after government cheques arrived in the community, which she said regularly leads to a spike in alcohol consumption and subsequent violence.
The prosecutor said Sewap’s death has also led to an increase in hostilities between the two factions and she described the current situation as a “gang war.”
“This was a very tragic incident. It has weighed heavily on the community of Pelican Narrows.”
Several members of Sewap’s family were on hand for Monday’s hearing, which prompted officials to move the proceedings to a larger courtroom. (MBC, paNOW)
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