Defence seeks new trial for two men convicted of manslaughter
Ronald Zerr, left, and Ashton Lavallee are seen leaving Court of Queen's Bench in Regina on Dec. 11.
Published Tuesday, December 18, 2012 8:39AM CST
Last Updated Tuesday, December 18, 2012 12:51PM CST
The defence is seeking a new trial for two men convicted of a fatal stabbing outside a bar in north Regina.
Last week, a jury found Ronald Zerr and Ashton Lavallee guilty of manslaughter in the February 2008 death of Albert Lowenberger outside the King’s Head Tavern.
The two were also convicted of aggravated assault against the victim’s twin brother, Robert Lowenberger, who was also stabbed in the fight. However, Zerr was found not guilty of second-degree murder.
As sentencing was set to begin Tuesday, defence lawyer Bob Hrycan made a surprise application for a mistrial.
He told the court that the guilty verdicts on the manslaughter charges are “deeply troubling” and “tantamount to a cry of confusion from the jury.”
Hrycan called for a new trial on the basis that the jury was instructed to only consider the argument of self-defence in relation to the charge of second-degree murder.
He says the jury should have been told to also consider self-defence in their verdicts on the remaining charges of manslaughter and aggravated assault.
The Crown requested an adjournment to respond to the application. The case is scheduled to return to court Thursday.