Pynn appears on murder charge

Philip Pynn, the suspect of a two-day police search in St. John's, appeared Tuesday in court as officials applied extraordinary security measures.
Philip Wayne Pynn was escorted to provincial court under heavy security Tuesday. He is charged with second-degree murder in the death of Nick Winsor. (CBC)

Philip Wayne Pynn, the suspect of a two-day police search in St. John's, appeared Tuesday in court as officials applied extraordinary security measures.

Pynn appeared at provincial court in St. John's on a charge of second-degree murder, laid after his friend Nick Winsor was shot Saturday night outside a home in the east end of St. John's.

Pynn was also charged with attempted murder in relation to the beating of the homeowner.

Nick Winsor, seen in a photograph posted to his Facebook page, was killed Saturday night outside a Portugal Cove Road home. ((CBC))

Meanwhile, the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary said Tuesday that Pynn was not acting alone and that there was at least one more person at large. However, Const. Suzanne FitzGerald said the public is not at risk.

Sheriff's officers used metal-detecting  wands to screen people before they entered the courtroom where Pynn, 25, appeared. The RNC assigned extra officers to the security detail at court.

Winsor, 20, was shot outside a Portugal Cove Road home in what sources tell CBC News was a botched robbery attempt.

CBC News has learned that police believe Pynn, Winsor and another man arrived at the home with weapons — including a shotgun with which Pynn is alleged to have shot Winsor — and a plan to steal jewelry.

Police said Tuesday that the weapon used in the shooting has not yet been recovered.

Pynn was taken into custody late Monday afternoon at a St. John's home.

His lawyer, Averill Baker, on Tuesday accused the RNC of using excessive force in taking Pynn into custody, and claimed that police broke a promise to allow a voluntary surrender.

FitzGerald refuted that, and said there had been no agreement on Pynn surrendering. To the contrary, she said the force used a tactical response team to apprehend Pynn because he was considered dangerous.

Victim, suspect longtime friends

Baker described Winsor as one of Pynn's closest friends.

"My client is devastated at the death of Nicholas Winsor, said Baker. "Anyone who knows Philip, knows Philip and Nicholas have been long-time friends. Boyhood friends."

The two had a lot in common.

On their Facebook profiles, Winsor and Pynn's photos sported the same tough look: multiple tattoos and three-fingered gang-style salutes.

Winsor was convicted of theft over $5,000 and assault with a weapon in May 2009. He was sentenced to 18 months in jail, and was prohibited from having firearms for 99 years.

In June, Winsor was found not guilty of having prohibited weapons. His friend Pynn took the stand and testified that the weapons were his.

At the end of Winsor's last stint in prison, he posted this entry to his Facebook page June 29: "Back on the street. Released in a limo. I ain't got buddies. I got brothers. Life's good."

Pynn was remanded to custody and his case is expected to be called in court again July 28.