MONTREAL – A man who brutally stabbed a young woman to death in a busy grocery store in Montreal in 2016 was convicted on Friday of first-degree murder.
A jury found Randy Tshilumba guilty of premeditated murder in the death of Clemence Beaulieu-Patry, rejecting the defence’s argument he was not criminally responsible for his actions.
Beaulieu-Patry’s mother wept outside the courtroom, saying the verdict would allow her to mourn her daughter in peace.
“There’s a price to pay for killing, assassinating a young woman…our beloved daughter,” Nathalie Beaulieu told reporters outside the courtroom.
“The sun was shining today and Clemence was there with us.”
The case returns to court next Wednesday for sentencing arguments.
Beaulieu-Patry’s parents said they intend to deliver statements about their daughter and how much she meant to them.
“We loved her, we waited for her, she gave us a lot of joy and we miss her, every day,” Beaulieu said, adding she would “never forgive” the accused, who she refused to name.
Beaulieu-Patry, 20, was stabbed 14 times on April 10, 2016, inside the grocery store where she worked.
Tshilumba pleaded not guilty and testified he acted in self-defence because he believed Beaulieu-Patry wanted to kill him and other people in the store.
The defence said Tshilumba had mental issues and argued he should be found not guilty by way of being not criminally responsible.
Crown prosecutor Catherine Perreault said Friday she believed the jury was swayed by the amount of evidence that was presented in court.
That included searches made from the suspect’s phone in the days following the crime on subjects including how to clean blood stains and get rid of weapons.
“It opened a window into the accused, his demeanour and everything he thought during those times, and I think this weighed a lot in the decision of the jury,” Perreault said in the moments following the verdict.
Perreault praised Beaulieu-Patry’s parents for their courage and commended the work of the jury, who delivered a verdict on the fourth day of deliberations.
The defence did not comment on the verdict or indicate whether it intends to appeal.