A Winnipeg man who fatally stabbed his older brother at a family Thanksgiving gathering in River Heights has been sentenced to four years in prison.
Justin Larche, 23, learned his fate Tuesday in provincial court. Larche previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter for killing Christopher Larche, 25, on Oct. 8, 2012.
"It's surprising, troubling and purportedly out of character for the accused to have acted in such a violent manner," Judge Mary Kate Harvie found.
The Crown sought a prison term somewhere in the "upper range" of five to eight years but Harvie ruled Larche's culpability for Christopher's "senseless and tragic" death didn't put him into that range of punishment.
A holiday gathering at a home on Lindsay Street was peaceful until Christopher began speaking rudely to his girlfriend and Justin stepped in to stop it, Harvie was previously told.
Both men had been drinking beer that night, court heard.
The brothers pushed and wrestled several times, prompting others present to step in to break it up. Eventually, the dispute moved into the kitchen. There, Christopher advanced towards Justin, prompting Justin to grab a steak knife off a dish rack and stab him twice in the torso.
Justin helped his brother to the front lawn and tried to stop the bleeding as 911 was summoned. Christopher died hours later in hospital.
Harvie found Justin Larche showed sincere remorse, had no intention to kill, made a full and emotional admission to police of what he did and pleaded guilty at an early stage. He had no prior record.
"I deserve jail time for my brother's sake, so it brings justice in a way," Larche told a probation officer.
Harvie credited Larche for a year spent in remand. He has three years left to serve.
-- James Turner