Guilty verdict for house party triple-shooting
Two young men have been found guilty for shooting three people, killing two of them, at a Winnipeg house party.
The men were just teens, aged 16 and 17 at the time, and cannot be named under provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act.
They were both found guilty of first-degree murder and attempted murder as the verdict was handed down Friday, following a lengthy trial in September.
Sentencing will happen at a hearing in May. The Crown intends to seek adult sentences, which could carry 25 years in prison for each man.
Tyler "T.J." Hawula and Matthew Reynolds, both 18, were killed in the Dec. 5, 2009, shooting in the 400 block of Martin Avenue in the city's Elmwood area.
Another male, who was 17 years old at the time, was wounded.
Reynolds's mother, Debbie Reynolds, told reporters that she was very relieved when she heard the verdict.
"I was absolutely happy, happy, happy that we got our first degree murder [conviction]. I want these guys monitored for the rest of their lives," Reynolds said outside court.
"I don't think they should be back on the street to be able to hurt people. I think they need to be monitored for the rest of their life. I believe they're cold, cold, soulless people."
Kicked out of party
During the trial, court was told the teens had been kicked out of the party, which was at Hawula's house.
People were nervous because they were showing off knives and bragging that they were in a street gang, court heard.
As Hawula ordered the teens out, one of them yelled that they were going to return and "blow the place up."
A woman who was at the party told court she later heard the front door of the house getting kicked in shortly after midnight and saw two men wearing bandanas over part of their faces storm in as one of them started shooting.
She ducked under a table and saw Reynolds get shot before the gunman turned to Hawula and shot him in the stomach, the woman told court.
Two other people were with the gunman, court heard. One of them pleaded guilty to manslaughter in connection to the deaths in January.
The fourth has a preliminary inquiry scheduled for April 2013, according to justice officials.