Lajray Gordon guilty of manslaughter in Saskatoon, faces deportation
Gordon, who immigrated from Jamaica, was sentenced on Wednesday to 7.5 years in prison minus time served and faces deportation.
Following closing arguments Tuesday, jurors were given the options of finding Gordon guilty of second-degree murder, not guilty of second-degree murder but guilty of manslaughter, or acquitting him.
Gordon’s lawyer argued his client was acting in self-defence.
“In this case, it was appropriate to use a knife,” defence lawyer Brian Pfefferle told the jury, acknowledging it “might not have been the best choice.”
Gordon said he stabbed Merasty in the chest because the deceased had him on the ground and choked him for four to 10 seconds.
The defence said the physical altercation played out after Merasty called Gordon a racial slur and a curse word.
According to the Crown, multiple witnesses never stated the choking happened and the narrative isn’t supported by surveillance video shown in court.
Gordon also didn’t suffer any injuries to his neck and throat, while Merasty didn’t have marks on his arms showing a person tried to fend him off, Crown prosecutor Cory Bliss said.
“Mr. Gordon’s story is impossible … it doesn’t make sense,” Bliss said.
He said Gordon’s testimony seemed fabricated – an attempt to escape conviction or a crystal meth-induced hallucination.
After the stabbing played out, Bliss said Gordon yelled “you got slashed” as he fled the scene.
Gordon testified to throwing the knife in the garbage.
Five days after the incident, police released a grainy image from a surveillance camera showing a person apparently running in the area.
Gordon turned himself in to police in October 2016.
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