June 27, 2014 - 2:05 PM
KELOWNA - A 29-year-old Kelowna man convicted of shooting and killing a high school student at a house party in 2007 will not be granted appeal, according to a hearing summary released Thursday.
Trevor Shannon, who was 22 at the time, was sentenced to life in prison in 2012. He maintains he was trying to use the gun as a club when it accidentally discharged, killing Wilkes.
The incident happened in the early morning hours of Apr. 8, 2007 when Shannon and two male companions went to pick up a friend at a high school house party on Vimy Road.
According the summary, “there occurred in the kitchen of the house a confrontation between a companion of the appellant and a drunken, belligerent young male. The (male) had been making himself obnoxious at the party for some time and was at one point advised by the son of the owner of the house to straighten up or leave.”
The male at one point produced a knife and a can of bear mace and “assumed a threatening stance.” That’s when Shannon pulled out the gun for the first time.
The summary says the party then emptied into the front yard where the male began taunting Shannon for bringing a gun to a party, saying he was afraid to use it.
At some point, while the victim was verbally abusing him, he thought he saw the can of bear spray being passed to someone near Wilkes.
A witness says she saw Shannon’s hand take the gun from his waist and “travel in an arc-like motion toward the victim”. The gun then fired and the victim fell to the ground.
Shannon claimed he had only hit Wilkes but soon left the scene on foot. Witnesses pursued him until Shannon turned and pointed the gun at them. He then attempted to hide the gun by burying it in the sand at a nearby beach.
Police apprehended him soon after and initially charged him with aggravated assault and weapons offences. The charge was changed to murder when the victim was pronounced dead.
During the appeal, Lawyers argued the judge did not properly instruct the jury on self defense and intoxication implications, but the appeal was dismissed.
“The judge clearly put to the jury the possibility of accident which would result in a verdict of manslaughter,” the hearing summary says. “The jury would not have been left in any confusion about the verdicts open to them.”
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014