Friday, August 20, 2010
Teen admits to killing 9 year old boy on Manitoba reserve
Teen admits killing 9 year old boy on MB reserve
WINNIPEG - A Manitoba teen has admitted to slitting the throat of a nine-year-old boy he was babysitting on a remote reserve.
The 17-year-old pleaded guilty Friday to second-degree murder and will be sentenced this fall. Justice officials agreed not to seek an adult sentence in exchange for his admission of guilt.
Tristian Dunsford was killed on June 27, 2008 inside a home in Little Grand Rapids, about 280 kilometres northeast of Winnipeg. He suffered massive blood loss as a result of "sharp force trauma to the neck," according to police.
No other details have been presented to the court, including any motive for the slaying or what type of weapon was used.
The accused was set to begin a Queen’s Bench jury trial next month before striking the plea bargain.
Crown and defence lawyers have requested a pre-sentence report and forensic assessment based on the belief the youth suffers from mental-health issues. However, the teen is not seeking to avoid criminal responsibility based on any existing issues.
He now faces a maximum sentence under the Youth Criminal Justice Act of seven years custody and community supervision. An adult convicted of second-degree murder would face a mandatory sentence of life in prison with no chance of parole for at least 10 years.
There could be many factors which contributed to this crime. First of all, this teen was from a reserve, which usually offer little employment or recreational opportunities, leaving reservation teens restless and bored. They often are more likely to be influenced by deviant norms and values of their peers, due to the fact that their parents live in poverty. They may witness or experience abuse, witness substance abuse, are neglected, lack supervision or monitoring, parents lack involvement in their child's life, lack of encouragement, support, affection, nurturance, consistent discipline, etc. These are all risk factors for teens to become involved in delinquent and antisocial behaviours. This article is biased as it fails to mention anything about this teen's background and family life.