Sentencing delayed in Taber manslaughter case

By Patrick Burles - @PatrickBurles on Twitter
November 14, 2017 - 3:35pm

TABER – Sentencing will likely have to wait until early 2018 for a man who pleaded guilty to a charge of manslaughter at the beginning of this year.

Stacey Charles Wahpistikwan was supposed to be sentenced Tuesday, Nov. 14, in Taber Provincial Court, but instead the matter was set over to Nov. 17 to set a new sentencing date.

Crown prosecutor, Lisa Weich, explained that sentencing had to be pushed back as expert reports that were requested by the defence haven’t been completed.

She noted that a Gladue report – examining how Wahpistikwan’s Aboriginal background may have impacted his life – and a pre-sentence report are already finished and have been delivered to all parties.

Weich also pointed out that the sentencing hearing will most likely go ahead in January 2018.

Wahpistikwan pleaded guilty to manslaughter on Jan. 27, 2017, after originally being charged with second-degree murder for the death of 36-year-old Silas Kiseyinewakup.

In an agreed statement of facts delivered to the court, he admitted that on Sept. 22, 2015, he had been drinking with his sister and her boyfriend, Kiseyinewakup, at the trailer they were living in near Taber.

The couple got into an argument and Kiseyinewakup assaulted Wahpistikwan's sister, leading the two men to go outside. They returned to the trailer after the confrontation, but when Kiseyinewakup assaulted his girlfriend a second time, the two men again went outside.

The following morning, Wahpistikwan's sister awoke to find Kiseyinewakup wasn't in the trailer. Wahpistikwan told her that he didn't know where he was and went to work.

Outside, she found blood in the dirt and followed drag marks to an irrigation canal, where Kiseyinewakup's body was discovered.

After police found a bag of Wahpistikwan's clothes covered in the victim's blood, he claimed there was never any confrontation between himself and Kiseyinewakup, and that he didn't know what had happened. However, in a second police interview, Wahpistikwan admitted that during a fight Kiseyinewakup pulled a knife. He stated that he managed to get control of the weapon and stabbed Kiseyinewakup, but that he couldn't remember where or how many times. Wahpistikwan then dragged Kiseyinewakup to the trailer, but decided to take his body to the canal when he realized he was dead.

Kiseyinewakup was stabbed a total of five times, two of which fatally damaged his heart and another his lungs.

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