Lillooet man who killed drug dealer given life sentence | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Lillooet man who killed drug dealer given life sentence

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September 20, 2017 - 6:30 PM

KAMLOOPS - A man convicted of murdering his drug dealer in Lillooet more than two years ago has been given a life sentence.

Jeffery Harris was found guilty by a jury earlier this year of the second-degree murder of 61-year-old Gary Mandseth.

Crown prosecutor Chris Balison says Harris will be behind bars for at least 10 years before he is eligible for parole, and after he's released he will be under a lifetime firearms prohibition.

Harris was sentenced in Kamloops yesterday, Sept. 19, after his first sentencing hearing was adjourned due to the poor air quality in Kamloops this summer. Both his defence lawyers suffered from respiratory issues and were advised to not travel to the city.

It took a six-man, six-woman jury less than three hours to deliver their guilty verdict earlier this year.

Mandseth died in February 2015 after getting into an altercation with Harris at his home. Mandseth suffered several stab wounds, but a pathologist testified during trial that the fatal wound was likely a stab to his heart.

During trial, defence lawyer Donna Turko argued Harris was in a state of automatism at the time of the offence, meaning his mind disassociated from his body during the period in which he killed Mandseth.

She said this happened after Mandseth injected Harris with cocaine, a drug he wasn't used to using intravenously.

Jurors didn't agree.

For more coverage on this case, go here.

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