December 12, 2013 Sections
Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
A 19-year-old man was sentenced this morning to three concurrent life sentences, with no chance of parole for 10 years, for killing two teens and nearly killing a third in December 2009.
Applause broke out in the Winnipeg courtroom from friends and family of the victims when Blake Whiteway learned his fate.
Justice Perry Schulman said the life sentences were mandatory for the first-degree murder convictions, adding that Whiteway's actions during the shooting spree demanded he be sentenced for a third life sentence for nearly killing St. Germain.
"It was a cold-blooded shooting," Schulman said. "It was a crime of sheer horror."
Whiteway was ordered to serve his sentence at a federal prison, most likely Stony Mountain Institution, just north of Winnipeg, where he requested to be sent.
Tyler Hawula and Matthew Reynolds, both 18, were gunned down at a house party at Hawula's home on Martin Avenue West and died from their injuries. Kyle St. Germain was seriously injured.
The attack was launched by Whiteway and another youth who had been kicked out of the party earlier in the night after Whiteway became argumentative and began brandishing weapons and frightening people.
The parents of Matthew Reynolds said they were pleased with the three life sentences, adding they don't believe Whiteway should ever be released from prison.
"He's a cold, callous killer," Debbie Reynolds said. "He should never, ever again see the light of day."
"He killed my son," Todd Huzel, Reynolds' step-father said. The sentence "is exactly what I want to hear. He's going to where he belongs."
Whiteway, now 19 but who was 16 at the time, had agreed to be sentenced as an adult and could only be named after the sentence was delivered.
St. Germain also attended the hearing this morning and said he had mixed feelings about the outcome.
"I'm glad he also got a life sentence for what he did to me," St. Germain said. "But that's not going to bring my friends back."
Germain's arm is badly disfigured and scarred from the shotgun blast. Pellets remain trapped inside his arm and he said it causes constant pain.
The co-accused at the trial, who was 17 at the time, has not yet been sentenced.
Another youth co-accused received a manslaughter sentence in youth court. Another gang member who was with them but remained outside the house, Cody Delorme, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and received an 11-year sentence.
Updated on Friday, May 3, 2013 at 10:44 AM CDT:
Adds reaction from victims' families.
Updated on Friday, May 3, 2013 at 11:37 AM CDT:
Adds comment from judge.