Less than 24 hours after his older brother was shot to death in their Dorval home, a 12-year-old boy appeared in youth court Tuesday where he was charged with manslaughter and possession of a prohibited weapon.
The Crown in the case objected to the boy’s release. He was remanded into custody and will return to court Friday for a bail hearing.
The boy and his parents, sitting on opposite sides of the courtoom, appeared devastated.
The 12-year-old boy and his family cannot be identified under the provisions of the young offenders act.
Earlier Tuesday, Constable Simon Delorme, a spokesperson with the Montreal Police, stated that the shooting “seems to have been accidental.”
But that was before the case was handed over to prosecutors to consider.
Police major-crime investigators completed their questioning of the preteen about 5:30 a.m., he said: While being interrogated, he added, the preteen “was accompanied by a parent, as is the right of a juvenile under the law.”
“That made it a little more complicated,” Delorme said.
The person with parental authority over the 12-year-old is his mother — whose older son had just perished.
“This is a very sad story,” Delorme said.
The mother was first taken to hospital for treatment of violent shock, he added.
The 16-year-old was struck by “at least one bullet to the upper body.”
Police have not determined whether or not the handgun used was registered.
However, Delorme said, “we are keeping that information at our level for the time being … because other persons still have to be met and questioned in relation to the firearm.”
He described the death weapon as “a family handgun.”
The boy spent the night in custody.
A neighbour who knows the family well said he was stunned to learn that there had been a weapon in the home.
“It was so shocking to think there was a gun in that house,” said Andrew Carruthers, who lives across the street from the family. “The boys never talked about having a gun.”
Carruthers said he had just returned from walking his dog about 5:30 p.m. Monday when he saw ambulances and police cars racing to the home.
Within minutes, the gravely injured boy was taken out of the house on a stretcher.
Carruthers said ambulance technicians worked on the 16-year-old for several minutes before he was rushed to hospital.
He was declared dead there.
Police took the 12-year-old away from the house in a police car.
Carruthers described both boys as well brought up, well-behaved and extremely polite: “Sometimes they ask whether we need help carrying in the groceries.”
He said both boys had been taken away from the home Monday night by the time their mother arrived home.
“She was asking where (the younger) boy was,” Carruthers recalled.
“She was a mess. She was leaning into her friend crying and she was taken away to be treated for shock.”
Carruthers described the mother as an exceptional parent who has devoted her life to her children.
“She is one of the nicest people I have ever met. She was always driving her boys all over the place. They love her and she is a fantastic mother.”
Carruthers said his thoughts are with his neighbours at this tragic time.
“They are the kind of neighbours you would want to have.
“The whole thing is just terrible.”