A teenager charged in connection with the death of Lucas Gaudet, a 16-year-old from Montreal’s West Island, pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree murder and one count of aggravated assault on Tuesday.
The court handed the teen a five-year sentence in youth detention based on a joint recommendation from both the Crown and defence counsel.
“I’m relieved that he pleaded guilty and we didn’t have to go to trial,” said Lynne Baudouy, Gaudet’s mother. “But I find that the sentence wasn’t enough. Then again, no amount of time will ever be enough. It’s so bittersweet.”
In an emailed statement, a spokesperson for Quebec’s Crown prosecutor’s office said the recommendation was made with the Youth Criminal Justice Act in mind.
“It aims to protect the public through the rehabilitation and reintegration of adolescents into our society,” Patricia Johnson wrote in French.
Johnson said many factors were considered, including the fact the teen did not have a criminal record and pleaded guilty early in the process, avoiding a trial being held.
According to Johnson, Gaudet’s loved ones were also in attendance, some of whom addressed the court.
Johnson felt it important to highlight both their courage and resilience.
Gaudet, a student at John Rennie High School in Pointe-Claire, died following an altercation outside nearby St. Thomas High School on Feb. 8, 2022.
Police said the 16-year-old was stabbed during the incident. He died two days later in hospital.
The death of the young hockey player sparked an outcry in the community, spurring calls for more action on youth violence.
A candlelight vigil held in his honour on March 10, drew hundreds.
Baudouy says she has forgiven the teen and hopes he is rehabilitated during his sentence.