Jury finds Daniel Jensen guilty of murder in stabbing of 3-year-old Hunter Straight-Smith

A jury has found a Winnipeg man guilty of first-degree murder in the stabbing death of his former girlfriend’s three-year-old son.

The decision in the case against Daniel Jensen was delivered shortly before 9 p.m. Wednesday. 

Jensen stabbed Hunter Straight-Smith multiple times while the three-year-old slept in his Pritchard Avenue home on Oct. 30, 2019. He was rushed to hospital and taken off life-support three days later.

After the decision Wednesday night, about 10 loved ones of Straight-Smith filed out of the courtroom, some pausing to embrace and sob quietly on the sidewalk outside. They declined to comment.

Jensen, 34, was charged with first-degree murder in the boy’s death. He had pleaded not guilty to the charge.

During his trial at Manitoba Court of Queen’s Bench, which began on Sept. 13, prosecutors argued that Jensen fatally stabbed the three-year-old in order to hurt Hunter’s mother, with whom Jensen was in an on-again, off-again relationship.

Surveillance footage, witness testimony and DNA evidence all pointed to Jensen as the killer, the prosecution argued.

Meanwhile, Jensen’s defence lawyer Bruce Bonney suggested that the boy’s death was not properly investigated, arguing that police and the victim’s family focused too much on Jensen and did not seriously consider other suspects. 

Bonney declined to comment after the decision.

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