A 23-year-old Halifax man has failed in his bid to get his first-degree murder conviction overturned.

Matthew Munroe was convicted in the December 2010 shooting death of Brandon Hatcher in Spryfield. Hatcher was killed in a gun battle with three men, including Munroe, who was only 17 years old at the time.

Munroe was sentenced as an adult. He was handed an automatic life sentence and must serve at least 10 years before applying for parole. 

Munroe appealed his conviction, arguing the trial judge incorrectly relied on some evidence that should not have been used.

The Nova Scotia Court of Appeal disagreed in a ruling released Wednesday, saying the trial judge made no error to warrant quashing the murder conviction.

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Police investigate the murder scene in Spryfield in December 2010. (Paul Palmeter/CBC)

Munroe and two other men went to the Lavender Walk area of Spryfield on the evening of Dec. 3, 2010. They were all armed and were looking for Hatcher, who they suspected of shooting another man earlier in the day.

According to testimony at the trial, Hatcher came out to confront the three gunmen after one of them called him on the phone. Hatcher was hit in the exchange of gunfire and staggered back into his home. He later died in hospital.

One of the other assailants, Cody Muise, was also convicted of first-degree murder for the attack on Hatcher. Muise and Hatcher were in rival drug gangs at the time of their armed confrontation.

The third person, who was a youth at the time of the shooting, had the murder charge against him dropped after he agreed to testify for the Crown.