he mother of a Calgary Stampeders football player has told a sentencing hearing that she’s angry her son survived the crime-filled streets of Detroit only to be gunned down in Canada.
Renee Hill said her son, Mylan Hicks, was a good and righteous man who followed his football dreams north of the border after he was cut by the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League.
Hicks, a 23-year-old player on the practice roster of the Canadian Football League Stampeders, was shot outside Calgary’s Marquee Beer Market in 2016.
“When you killed him, you killed me too,” Hill told Lugela in court Thursday. “Shame.”
Hill detailed the darkness and depression she has dealt with since her son’s death. Life isn’t getting any easier, she said, and she’s angry.
She said others in the United States are also angry that Lugela killed one of their own.
“You’ll never be free here. You killed a king’s kid,” she said.
Lugela faces an automatic life sentence and the court must determine how long he should serve before he can apply for parole.
The Crown has asked for an ineligibility period of between 17 and 19 years.
Hill told court that she always told her son to leave a party 30 minutes early, because the end of the night is where “trouble starts.”
The trial heard that several Stampeders, including Hicks, had been celebrating a victory over Winnipeg in a game hours earlier. A disagreement over a spilled drink in the bar intensified after closing time in the parking lot.
Witnesses testified that after some pushing and shoving, a person who appeared to be holding a handgun opened fire at Hicks as he was running for cover.
Hicks was hit twice, in the abdomen and chest, and died in hospital.
Court heard Lugela and two other young men jumped into an SUV and sped away after Hicks was hit. Three people were arrested about 45 minutes later when they returned to the scene.
Several witnesses identified Lugela as the man holding the gun.
Justice Keith Yamauchi said he looked at all the evidence presented at trial and was confident Lugela shot Hicks.
Watch below: Ongoing Global News covers of Mylan Hicks’ death and the trial for Nelson Lugela