A Thunder bay man has been found guilty as charged after the manslaughter death of a 34-year-old Wabigoon Lake Ojibway Nation resident in 2017.

Three years ago, Brayden Bushby, then 18, was accused of throwing a metal trailer hitch from a moving vehicle in Thunder Bay, striking 34-year-old Barbara Kentner. She was walking through a residential neighborhood with her sister.

Bushby plead guilty to a charge of aggravated assault in the early stages of the trial, but plead not guilty to the count of manslaughter.

Justice Helen M. Pierce delivered her verdict on December 14, saying the Crown proved the defendant knew he would seriously injure Kentner when he threw the hitch.

Kentner suffered a perforated bowel as a result of the attack, and required an emergency operation the following day. She died five months later in July of 2017.

Court heard that a post-mortem examination completed three days after Kentner passed away showed her death was caused by complications arising from the injury to her abdomen, which also contributed to liver failure.

An official sentencing is expected on February 9, 2021 in Thunder Bay. Bushby has been remanded into custody until that date.

Bushby was initially charged with aggravated assault and released on bail in November of 2017. But following a review of the case by the Crown, Regional Coroner’s Office and the Thunder Bay Police Service, he was charged with second degree murder.

He plead not guilty in September of 2019 to the murder charge. However, the Crown downgraded the murder charges down to manslaughter about one year later. His court date was also delayed twice due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Manslaughter does not carry an automatic sentence for life imprisonment, but it remains an option for the court. If life imprisonment is given, Bushby would be eligible for parole after 7 years, which could be delayed to 10 years.

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