Teen accused of 2nd degree murder in death of Devan Selvey pleads guilty

Devan Selvey with mother Shari-Ann Selvey.
Devan Selvey with mother Shari-Ann Selvey. (Submitted to Global News by victim's family)

The teen accused of fatally stabbing Devan Selvey outside of his east Hamilton high school has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder just before his jury trial was set to begin.

The accused, now 16, can’t be identified under a court-ordered publication ban.

Originally, the trial was scheduled for four weeks following pre-trial motions completed in the summer.

Read more: Teenage boy accused of killing Devan Selvey now charged with 2nd-degree murder: Hamilton police

The youth, who was 14 in October 2019, was initially charged with first-degree murder in Selvey’s death.

Selvey was fatally stabbed outside Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School on Oct. 7, 2019.

Another teen, who was 18 at the time and the brother of the accused, pleaded guilty in August 2020 to unauthorized possession of a weapon and is serving 15 months of probation on a suspended sentence.

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In an agreed statement of facts, it was revealed the confrontation between the two accused and the victim was in connection with a bike stolen about a month before Selvey died.

The events of Oct. 7 took a turn when bear spray was used on one of Selvey’s friends, and the victim was eventually stabbed in the back.

Selvey’s mother said her son was being bullied before he was killed and claims staff at the school and at the Hamilton-Wentworth District School didn’t do enough to prevent his death.

The fatal stabbing prompted the public school board to call for the independent review, which was conducted by Dr. Jean Clinton, Dr. Gary Warner, and Brenda Flaherty.

The final report from the Safe Schools panel heard from about 10,000 people who shared their experiences with bullying across the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) system.

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Read more: Family, friends of Hamilton teen fatally stabbed gather to mourn at funeral

Close to 60 per cent of students surveyed for the review said they had been bullied in the year prior to the pandemic, and 19.7 per cent reported that they were bullied on a regular basis.

Those figures are higher than the national average from 2017, when just over 30 per cent of Canadian students reported being bullied at least once by their peers and between 7 to 10 per cent said they were bullied on a regular basis.

The 102-page report made 11 recommendations on how bullying incidents should be handled in the future.

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