A jury this week found Shane Richard, 29, guilty of second degree murder in the shooting death of Michael Boutros, 26, of Coquitlam, in Whistler Village in the early hours of March 10, 2007 — the first murder in the resort in years.
After closing arguments, the jury began deliberations on Tuesday (Jan. 27). They came back on Wednesday and asked again to hear Richard’s testimony, which was that he was acting in self-defence. According to Richard and witnesses, Boutros was holding part of a broken bottle when Richard opened fire from approximately two metres away.
An RCMP dog team that was in the village witnessed the incident, and Richard was subdued by the dog while attempting too flee.
On Thursday, Supreme Court Justice Christopher Hinkson agreed to dismiss one of the jurors who claimed she was having a nervous breakdown. However, the remaining 11 jurors came to the conclusion that Richard — a Surrey resident who was known to police and identified as a bodyguard to a drug dealer — was guilty of murder in the second degree.
In Canada, second degree murder refers to a murder that was not planned or contracted, and does not meet any of the other requirements of first degree murder. It carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole from 10 to 25 years.
Justice Hinkson will hear submission on Feb. 26 before passing sentence on Richard.
The shooting occurred after 2 a.m. as two groups of males got into a dispute after the closing of a nightclub.