After beginning deliberations late Thursday afternoon, the jury at the Gerald Stanley murder trial spent most of the day back in the courtroom rehearing testimony from the accused and his son.
Stanley, 56, pleaded not guilty to a second-degree murder charge in connection with the 2016 shooting death of Colten Boushie, 22. Only hours after retiring to begin their discussions, the jury presented Chief Justice Martel Popescul with a written request, asking to hear the testimony of Stanley and his 28-year-old son Sheldon again.
“We want to re-hear Sheldon’s testimony from when he came out of the house. We also would like to hear Gerald’s testimony from where he fired his first shot and on,” the jury request read.
The portions requested by the jury centre around the moments when the shooting occurred. In his testimony Stanley said the shooting was accidental, and indicated his pistol misfired the fatal bullet without him pulling the trigger.
Sheldon Stanley said he did not witness the firing of the fatal round, but heard the gunshot and saw his father standing next to the SUV carrying Boushie, with a pistol in one hand and a magazine in the other. Gerald Stanley, his son testified, looked “like he was going to be sick” and said, “I don’t know what happened. It just went off. I just wanted to scare them.”
Popescul, in discussions with the Crown and defence counsel, decided isolating the requested portions of the audio recordings would be a difficult process, so the testimony was played in its entirety. The recordings were played for the jury in open court, with Stanley and both legal teams present in the courtroom.
Rehearing the testimony took up the entire morning and much of the afternoon Friday, as Stanley and his son testified for a total of about four hours.
After listening to the recordings, the jurors retired to continue their deliberations. They can find Stanley guilty of murder or manslaughter, or not guilty. If a verdict is not reached today, the jury will continue deliberating into the weekend and as long as necessary.
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