It was the case of dueling firearms experts at the second degree murder trial of Gerald Stanley in Battleford today.   He is accused of shooting 22 year old Colten Boushie to death in August of 2016 after Boushie and a group of his friends arrived at the Stanley Farm in a broken down SUV.  The prosecution rested its case by calling a firearms expert who testified it is highly unlikely the gun fired on its own seconds after the trigger was pulled.

The defence began its case with its own gun expert who said there was damage to the gun that could have resulted in missfires.

The final witness of the week is John Ervin who did extensive tests on the Tokarev handgun seized from Gerald Stanley.  The gun is from the 60’s and the ammunition was even older.  Ervin says there was  some damage to the slide mechanism that could prevent the cartridge from being fully inserted into the chamber before firing.

He also examined the bullet casing recovered from the inside of the SUV where Boushie was shot.  The casing was deformed and had a bulge on it,   indicating some type of malfunction

Ervin could not replicate it in test fires.  Ervin also testified about  a phenomenon, called hang fire, where the bullet does not immediately fire after a trigger pull,   but couldn’t say whether that did or did not happen in the case of Stanley’s gun.   Hang fires usually last a fraction of a second.  Ervins says  he could not explain why the pistol went off, except to say the pistol and cartridge were not acting normally.  He theorized something might have hit the firing pin causing it go off.

Earlier in the trial, Gerald Stanley’s son testified his father said the gun went off accidentally.  Courtroom observers like Gerald Wuttunee the former chief of the Red Pheasant First Nation is not buying any of the arguments.

“On that day, he was the judge, he was the jury and he was the executor, he took the law into his owns and decided to shoot my nephew that day,” he said.

The trial resumes on Monday,  when Stanley’s lawyer,  Scott Spencer provides opening arguments.  It is not known how many witnesses he will call or if Gerald Stanley will take the stand in his own defence.