Outrage erupts in court after 2 men get time served
Ronald Zerr, left, and Ashton Lavallee are seen leaving Court of Queen's Bench in Regina on Dec. 11.
Published Thursday, December 20, 2012 4:34PM CST
Last Updated Thursday, December 20, 2012 5:12PM CST
Outrage erupted in a Regina courtroom Thursday after two men convicted of manslaughter in a fatal stabbing outside a bar were sentenced to time served.
Justice Guy Chicoine sentenced Ronald Zerr to nine years and Ashton Lavallee to seven years in the February 2008 killing of Albert Lowenberger.
However, with two-for-one credit for the nearly five years the two men spent on remand, both were released from custody following the sentence.
Relatives of the victim reacted angrily in court after the sentence was read. Outside the courthouse, the family told reporters that there had been no justice for Albert Lowenberger.
The 26-year-old died after he was stabbed in the heart during a fight outside the King’s Head Tavern nearly five years ago.
During the trial, there was conflicting testimony on both sides about who started the fight and how the events unfolded that night.
A jury found Lowenberger’s friend, Kelly Charbonneau, instigated the fight after he punched Lavallee outside the bar.
However, jurors found both Zerr and Lavallee guilty of aggravated assault against the victim’s twin brother, Robert Lowenberger, who was stabbed twice in the face during the altercation.
The Crown told reporters it is considering an appeal of the sentence. Lawyers for Zerr and Lavallee said while they were satisfied with the sentence, they may appeal the verdict.
Earlier Thursday, Chicoine dismissed an application for a mistrial after the defence unsuccessfully argued that the process had been “fatally wounded” by omissions in the jury instructions.