A man who was charged with the 2016 killing of David Delaney of Abbotsford has been found guilty of manslaughter.
Shayne McGenn, 35, had originally been charged with second-degree murder, but a judge on Monday convicted him of the lesser charge of manslaughter following the conclusion of a trial that began in early June.
McGenn’s co-accused, Sarah Sather, also 35, was found not guilty of accessory after the fact.
McGenn’s sentencing hearing has been scheduled for Oct. 2 in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster.
Manslaughter carries no minimum sentence – except when committed with a firearm, in which case the minimum is four years – and can range up to life in prison.
Delaney, 63, was discovered dead in the bedroom of his fourth-floor suite in the Aspen Court apartment building on Center Street in Abbotsford on Feb. 23, 2016.
He had died either late on the evening of Feb. 6 or the early morning of Feb. 7, according to evidence presented in court.
McGenn and Delaney knew each other because Delaney had previously been in a common-law relationship with McGenn’s mother.
According to information presented in court, McGenn moved into Delaney’s apartment in August 2015 and obtained a job at Big River Restaurant and Taphouse in Coquitlam, where Delaney was a manager.
Delaney fired McGenn in 2016 due to concerns about his drug use at the restaurant.
In late January 2016, Sather and the child she had with McGenn also moved into the apartment.
Court documents state that McGenn, who was in the midst of a drug addiction, borrowed money from Delaney and some of his co-workers to finance his drug habit.
McGenn also used Delaney’s credit card without permission, and this created further financial problems for Delaney, the documents state.
The relationship deteriorated to the point where Delaney intended to ask McGenn, Sather and their child to leave their apartment.
Crown lawyer Tyler Dotten stated in his opening submissions at trial that McGenn and Delaney got into an argument in which McGenn attacked Delaney with a frying pan and a knife, and then strangled him with his belt.
Dotten alleged that Sather was in the apartment at the time of the killing and helped destroy evidence afterwards, including cleaning a knife and wiping up bloody water in the bathroom, where McGenn had showered after the offence.
McGenn was arrested and charged in Penticton in May 2016, and Sather was also charged around that time.