Two jurors dismissed from Saint John murder trial

·1 min read

Two jurors were dismissed Wednesday afternoon at the second-degree murder trial of Justin Breau.

After lengthy legal discussions Wednesday morning, Mr. Justice Thomas Christie told the jury mid-afternoon about his decision to excuse the two.

He asked the 11 remaining jurors not to speculate on the reason. The details of the legal process is protected by a publication ban.

The judge also told jurors that he would complete his final instructions Thursday morning before turning the case over to them for deliberation.

Originally, 14 jurors were selected, but one was dismissed on the first day of the trial, leaving 13 jurors who listened to 22 witnesses over eight days. One of them was going to be randomly selected and dismissed before deliberations began, because the law sets a maximum of 12 jurors. But after Wednesday's dismissals, that's no longer necessary. Under the law, a minimum of 10 jurors is required.

Breau, 37, is charged with second-degree murder in the death of Mark Shatford.

Submitted by Debra Shatford
Submitted by Debra Shatford

During the trial, Breau admitted shooting 42-year-old Shatford on Nov. 17 of last year, but said he acted in self-defence.

The jury heard that a drug deal had been set up via text messages between Breau and Shatford and his fiancée . A scuffle ensued inside the apartment before continuing outside.

Both Crown and defence agree that Breau grabbed a shotgun from the vehicle he borrowed from a friend and shot Shatford in the abdomen.

Despite several surgeries, Shatford died of his injuries a month later.