Man, who stabbed a best friend to death, sentenced

Man, who stabbed a best friend to death, sentenced

Back in 2017 two best friends were at the Manwin hotel in Winnipeg. The conversation turned into a heated argument and one of them stabbed another one to death.

At about 10:30 p.m., police found John Blaine Flett, 50, in critical condition after he was stabbed in the upper body and not breathing in the lobby of the Manwin Hotel on the evening of July 16, 2017. He was rushed to hospital in critical condition but died.

His buddy, Eric Guimond from Winnipeg killed a friend and will spend the next eight years behind bars for his crime.

A 58-year-old Guimond turned himself in the next day and was charged with second-degree murder. On Thursday, November 1st he pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter in a Winnipeg courtroom as part of a deal reached between Crown prosecutors and Guimond's defense that saw them jointly recommend a 10-year sentence.

Еру defendant admitted to stabbing Flett six times — including a fatal blow to his heart — after the pair got into an argument over how Guimond had spoken to Flett's partner a few nights earlier. The situation, apparently, got out of hand fast, one of the men tried to hit another, but instead got stabbed with a knife multiple times, and alcohol and drugs were a factor in the outcome as per the investigators.

Flett's sister Angela Young turned to face Guimond while she read an emotional victim impact statement, describing Flett as a "just man" who would help others when he saw something wrong. "John was my big brother.… He was a gentle giant but wouldn't allow anyone to cross lines or hurt them. He would say something and stand by his words," said Young, who stopped briefly to hold back tears, but kept her eyes on Guimond throughout her statement. The situation got very emotional at the courtroom, with Young crying, but still going through with a statement.

"Do you know he left two daughters, a grandson, a godson, sisters, brothers, aunts, and uncles? Do you know that he loved you and you were his friend and would have — he did — die for you? "I hope you know you broke my heart. You took my brother from me."

Court of Queen's Bench Justice Chris Martin agreed with the recommended sentence, which was reduced by two years for time Guimond has spent in custody since his arrest. The sentence, which includes a lifetime weapons ban, means a jury trial set to start in December will not go ahead.

"Me and John were best friends and even though I can't take back what I did, I'm very sorry for what I did."

- Eric Guimond