After just four and a half hours of deliberations, a jury found 75-year-old Shou Chen guilty of second-degree murder.
Chen was arrested in October 2014, days after 65-year-old grandmother Xian Xu Liu was beaten to death outside Wallace Emerson Community Centre near Dufferin and Dupont.
Chen has been in custody since his arrest and pleaded not guilty to the charge of second-degree murder through a Cantonese interpreter. Last Thursday during closing arguments, Chen’s lawyer Greg Leslie admitted to the jury that his client was, in fact, responsible for attacking and killing Liu with a metal pipe. Leslie argued it was manslaughter, not second-degree murder.
After the jury delivered its guilty verdict, Justice Kenneth Campbell told the jurors their job was not over.
“Your next task is to decide if Mr. Chen is criminally responsible,” Campbell said. “Defence will try to argue Chen was suffering from a mental disorder at the time of the offence, which would render him not criminally responsible.”
Campbell told jurors that the Crown will argue Chen was able to distinguish right from wrong and was criminally responsible. If the jury decides Chen is criminally responsible, the judge will then consider a sentence on the verdict of second-degree murder, which comes with an automatic sentence of life in prison. The question Justice Campbell must decide is Chen’s parole eligibility. It could be anywhere between 10 and 25 years.
The hearing to decide if Chen is criminally responsible will begin Friday afternoon.