Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Five more years behind bars for fatally stabbing neighbour

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A jury took a mandatory life sentence off the table when it ruled Robert Prince didn't deliberately stab a man to death.

Now, the convicted Winnipeg killer has been sentenced to five more years in prison.

Prince, 46, was convicted of manslaughter instead of the more serious charge of second-degree murder.

He returned to court Wednesday, where Queen's Bench Justice Robert Dewar sentenced him to seven years, less two years of time already served.

Defence lawyer Ryan Amy had requested a total five-year sentence on paper. The Crown sought nine years.

Darryl John Sinclair, 45, suffered fatal injuries during the January 2011 incident. Prince didn't deny killing Sinclair by slashing his throat. His lawyer argued the attack was a tragic accident, a position the jury accepted by finding him guilty of the reduced charge.

Jurors heard the trouble began when Sinclair and his girlfriend joined Prince for a night of drinking inside a highrise apartment at 269 Dufferin Ave., where all three lived. Sinclair wanted to leave but his girlfriend did not, court was told.

Sinclair hit her in the face before fleeing. That's when Prince grabbed a knife, followed Sinclair into the hallway and stabbed him once.

"He acted on the sudden, before his passions had cooled," Amy told jurors in his closing arguments.

"If he meant to kill, why did he allow (the victim) to walk away? Why didn't he, pardon the crassness, finish the job?"

Police found Sinclair collapsed in a pool of blood in a stairwell after one of the other tenants in the building called 911.

www.mikeoncrime.com

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 10, 2013 A11

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