Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Teens to face sentencing for deadly carjacking on Manitoba reserve

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Free Press reporter Mike McIntyre will be tweeting live Thursday as two Manitoba teens are set to be sentenced for a botched carjacking that ended with a woman being decapitated.

The girls, who were 17 and 15 at the time of the July 2011 incident, pleaded guilty earlier this year to manslaughter and car theft. They will return to court in Portage la Prairie to learn their fate.

The Crown is seeking the maximum youth penalty of two years in custody, in addition to the almost 12 months they have already spent in custody. Defence lawyers are expected to ask for a sentence of time already served which allow them to be released immediately.

Roberta Dawn McIvor, 32, fell asleep in her car in Sandy Bay First Nation near Portage la Prairie. The two girls jumped inside and took it for a ride before they pulled over and tried to remove McIvor.

As they drove away, McIvor became tangled in her seatbelt and was dragged for a short distance before suffering the deadly injury.

"They didn't realize this was happening. They just thought they would put her out of the car and be done with it," defence lawyer Greg Brodsky told the Free Press earlier this year. He said his client was stunned to learn McIvor had died.

Brodsky said extra security measures have been put in place for Thursday’s court hearing, including moving it from the provincial court building to Court of Queen’s Bench so that all visitors can be x-rayed before entering the room.

"The community is really torn up, all up in arms over this on both sides," he said.

A report on the background of the two accused has been completed and is expected to be a focal point of defence submissions.

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