19-year-old sentenced in Ottawa bus murder
The man convicted of murdering a 23-year-old passenger on an Ottawa bus over an iPod was sentenced Thursday to life in prison with no chance of parole for 10 years.
Shawn McKenzie was 17 when he was charged with stabbing Michael Oatway in the back of an OC Transpo bus in September 2006.
But the judge decided to sentence him as an adult and lift the ban on releasing his name.
Oatway had been riding at the back of the bus when four youths allegedly boarded the bus and approached him.
McKenzie, the court was told, then demanded Oatway's iPod and when Oatway refused to give it to him, McKenzie stabbed him in the chest.
McKenzie was convicted of first-degree murder in December and that's when the Crown applied to have him sentenced as an adult.
Judge Robert Maranger said that the seriousness of the crime and the likelihood that McKenzie would reoffend is what justified an adult sentence.
"Shawn McKenzie is entirely responsible for the killing of Michael Oatway," he said. "His moral culpability is complete."
The notion that McKenzie might reoffend is one McKenzie's mother doesn't share.
"My son is not a killer," she said. "It's just a random incident. He's not a killer."
Grace Routh, Oatway's sister, says that her family is happy that someone is looking out for the safety of the community.
"I actually feel a physical weight lifted off my shoulders," she said. "And I really hope I can sleep at night now."
Counting McKenzie's time served, he should be eligible for parole in 2016.