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Brayden Bushby to stand trial on 2nd degree murder for death of Barbara Kentner

Brayden Bushby was initially charged with aggravated assault, accused of throwing a metal trailer hitch from a moving vehicle which struck 34-year-old Barbara Kentner. Kentner died in July and Bushby's charge was subsequently upgraded to second degree murder.

Brayden Bushby returned to court Jan. 21

Brayden Bushby (centre) will stand trial on charges of second degree murder for the death of 34-year-old Barbara Kentner in Thunder Bay, Ont. (Matt Prokopchuk / CBC)

A Thunder Bay, Ont., man will stand trial for second degree murder in the death of an Indigenous woman who was hit by a trailer hitch in January 2017.

Brayden Bushby was initially charged with aggravated assault, accused of throwing a metal trailer hitch from a moving vehicle which struck 34-year-old Barbara Kentner.

Kentner died in July and, in November 2017, Bushby's charge was upgraded to second degree murder.

On Monday afternoon, Justice Frank Valente told a packed courtroom in the northwestern Ontario city that the evidence presented over four days of preliminary hearings in September, was enough to send the case to trial. Valente presided over those hearings.

Valente said on Monday that "there is sufficient evidence in this sad, sad case to put Mr. Bushby on trial for second degree murder."

That evidence is protected by a publication ban.

Kentner was walking with her sister in a south-side Thunder Bay residential neighbourhood during the early morning hours of Jan. 29 when the incident occurred.

On Jan. 15, the judge was scheduled to issue his ruling but requested more time to arrive at a decision.

Valente told the packed room on Monday that, when ruling on whether to send the matter to trial, he had to be satisfied that a jury, based on the evidence, could potentially arrive at a guilty verdict.

Kentner's aunt, Lisa Kooshet, told CBC News after court adjourned that "it's been a long two years," and that "I think what happened in court today is probably the direction it needs to go."

"[It's been] like a roller coaster," she continued. "It's been hard with the family, you know, all the family trying to keep close together through it all."

"It's been tiring for the family."

Bushby, wearing a black coat, sat in the gallery, looking straight ahead as the judge delivered his decision. He's been out on bail with conditions since November 2017.

Bushby's lawyer, George Joseph, declined comment as he left the courthouse.

A trial date has not yet been set.

A trial will take place in Thunder Bay for the man accused of killing an Indigenous woman by throwing a trailer hitch at her from a moving car. This afternoon, a judge ruled that there is enough evidence for Brayden Bushby to stand trial for second degree murder in the death of Barbara Kentner. Kentner was walking with her sister in a south-side Thunder Bay neighbourhood when she was struck by the heavy object. The evidence presented in preliminary hearings in September is subject to a publication ban. Justice Frank Valente was scheduled to issue his ruling last week but requested the few extra days to finalize his decision. Supporters of Kentner's family held a sacred fire and ceremony across from the court house that morning. After court adjourned this afternoon, Kentner's aunt, Lisa Kooshet, spoke with CBC News about today's ruling. 4:16