Court hears of 'tragic' upbringing as Calgary man pleads guilty to killing younger brother
Wayne Runner pleaded guilty to manslaughter Tuesday, admitting to stabbing brother in heart
Update — April 18, 2019: Wayne Runner was sentenced. With two years credit for the time he has already served, Runner has another two years in jail and then will be on strict probation conditions for a further three years.
Original story below:
Cory Runner died after being stabbed in the heart in what was described as a "tragic case of two brothers with no parents," court heard Tuesday as Wayne Runner pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
Originally charged with second-degree murder, Wayne, 34, pleaded guilty to the lesser offence before Judge Karen Crowshoe, admitting to the fatal attack on his younger brother last year.
The plea was arranged by prosecutor Jason Wuttunee and defence lawyer Alain Hepner, who called his client's story a tragic one.
'Everything will be all right'
On the night of Dec. 6, 2017, the brothers and Cory's fiancée, Reannin Scout, were drinking together at the home they shared in the northeast community of Rundle.
Scout fell asleep in the basement but woke up to the sound of a loud smash coming from upstairs.
She heard the two brothers arguing, with her fiance yelling "get the f--k out of here."
Scout smelled bear spray, and when she went upstairs, she found her fiancé "severely injured" and lying in the grass outside the house.
Cory told his fiancée "everything will be all right" before asking her to call an ambulance.
Officer performs CPR
It was just after midnight, when Wayne called 911 and reported his brother had just returned from the C-Train station "all stabbed up."
"I think he's stabbed in the heart," he told the 911 operator.
A police officer arrived at 1 a.m. and found Cory, 29, "in the final stages of dying."
Sgt. Steve Cook saw Cory take a "single gasping agonal breath." The victim's heart had stopped beating, so Cook began CPR until paramedics arrived, taking over.
Cory was pronounced dead shortly after.
Police would later find a bottle of bear spray in his pocket.
2nd stabbing between brothers
When backup arrived, officers noticed Wayne appeared drunk and had blood on his hands and clothing. He was arrested for murder. Once at the police station, he threw up and complained of being hungover.
Investigators found blood was all over the brothers' house, with a large knife in the kitchen sink.
Before he was killed, Cory had sprayed Wayne with bear spray and smashed through the front door window with his arm.
This wasn't the first time Cory had been stabbed by Wayne.
In March 2016, police were called to the home. They found both brothers drunk and Cory suffering stab wounds to his neck and back. Cory told officers his brother had attacked him.
Neither of the men would co-operate with police so no charges were laid.
Before Wayne's sentencing hearing in December, a number of reports have been ordered including risk and psychological assessments.
A Gladue report has also been ordered. It examines an Indigenous offender's background and upbringing.
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