Nfld. & Labrador

Lyndon Butler, once acquitted of murder, arrested for alleged weapons offences

Just shy of five years after he was found not guilty of killing Nick Winsor, Lyndon Butler is back in jail again.

Butler was found not guilty in 2014 shooting death of Nick Winsor

Lyndon Butler, 29, is led into the holding cells at provincial court in St. John's on Tuesday, four days after his arrest in Conception Bay South. (Eddy Kennedy/CBC)

Just shy of five years after he was found not guilty of killing Nick Winsor, Lyndon Butler is back before the courts.

The 29-year-old took a deep sigh as he sat in the prisoner's box in provincial court Tuesday morning, at which time his bail hearing was rescheduled for Thursday due to the high number of arrests over the weekend and full holding cells. 

Butler was picked up by the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary on Friday evening while officers were conducting checkpoints in Conception Bay South. It was dubbed Operation Impact.

Police say instead of catching a speeder, they caught a young man with a handgun.

Butler is facing eight charges, including possessing a handgun while prohibited from doing so, possessing a loaded firearm or a firearm with accessible ammunition, possessing a handgun without a licence, and possessing a handgun for a purpose dangerous to the public. 

Butler was charged with second-degree murder, alongside Philip Pynn for the 2011 killing of their friend, Nick Winsor.

Winsor was killed after a shotgun was discharged into his neck.

Butler was released from custody in 2012 and stayed on strict conditions until his trial in 2014, when the jury came back with a guilty verdict of manslaughter for Pynn but an acquittal for Butler.

At the time of his acquittal, Butler's lawyer, Jeff Brace, said he was hoping to go to law school.

"He's been three and a half years dealing with the court system and knowing how things can go wrong, and that is actually his plan," Brace said of Butler. "He actually has the LSAT book and he's starting to study."

Prior to being charged and acquitted in Winsor's death, Butler was convicted of other crimes, including drug trafficking, careless use of a firearm, importing or delivering a prohibited weapon, and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose.

At that time, he was placed on a 10-year firearms prohibition.

Butler is now being represented by well-known lawyer and former politician Jerome Kennedy. 

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About the Author

Ariana Kelland is a reporter with the CBC Newfoundland and Labrador bureau in St. John's.