New trial ordered for fatal shooting of Six Nations man in 2016
Canada’s top court has ruled that a Hamilton man, who was charged with the shooting and killing of a Six Nations father of two in 2016, will be heading back to court.
Peter Khill was acquitted for second-degree murder in the case in 2018.
29-year-old Jon Styres of Six Nations was shot and killed in February 2016. He left behind his partner and their two children.
The Supreme Court of Canada has upheld an appeal court ruling that the trial judge erred in his instructions to the jury and ordered a new trial.
At the first trial, Khill argued that he was acting in self-defence when he shot Styres.
“Mr. Khill continues to be innocent in the eyes of the law and looks forward to fully and vigorously defending the matter at his new trial,” said Jeff Manishen, Khill’s defence lawyer.
Lindsay Hill, Styres’ partner and the mother of their two daughter said in part, “I am grateful that the decision to order a new trial was upheld by the Supreme Court. A new trial for Jon’s killer means new hope that Jon will get the justice he deserves. This news is bittersweet though. The last five and a half years have been an extremely difficult, emotional rollercoaster for my children and I.”
Hill says Indigenous people are all too familiar with the problems in the judicial system, in a time when it seems many in Canada are just starting to realize the systemic barriers that Indigenous people have faced, past and present.
She said they're waiting for the court to set both the criminal and civil court dates.
A former army reservist, Khill admitted he shot and killed Styres, believing Styres was armed and trying to steal his truck.
Six Nations residents were upset with the outcome of the first trial, after a white man was found not guilty of killing an Indigenous man, although there was no evidence presented at trial that Khill knew Styres was Indigenous.
“Our people deserve a justice system that functions well and serves all people with equity, a system in which we can place our trust,” said Katie Montour, Six Nations of the Grand River Communications Officer. “It is our hope that this new trial will be fair, focus on accountability, and pursue the truth.”
Khill also faces an ongoing civil lawsuit.
- Six Nations 24/7 Mobile Crisis Line: 519-445-2204 or 1-866-445-2204
- Six Nations Mental Health and Addictions: 519-445-2143 (Monday-Friday, 8:30am-4:30pm)
- National Indian Residential School Crisis Line: 1-866-925-4419