Vanderhoof man jailed for manslaughter

Vanderhoof man jailed for manslaughter, found guilty for son shot dead

A Vanderhoof man is found guilty for his son’s shooting death at Takla Landing.

At Prince George Law Courts on Jan. 27, Jacques Seguin, 69, is sentenced to four years in jail and a lifetime prohibition from using firearms.

According to the written judgment, Seguin had a close and loving relationship with his then 36-year-old son Christopher, who suffered from Fragile X Syndrome, Bipolar Disorder, Type 2 Diabetes, and possibly Asperger’s Syndrome.

Christopher had also struggled with illicit drugs, as well as sudden and irrational mood swings and violent behaviour at times.

On Aug. 16, 2013, Seguin and his son were on a 10-day family fishing trip at the family’s vacation cabin.

They were barbecuing the fish they caught that day and drinking beer, relaxed and happy. Seeing bear scat nearby, Seguin had brought his loaded rifle in case of bears.

Going to his cabin to retrieve spices and bringing along his rifle, Seguin returned to see his son enraged, though he did not know why.

Seguin shot Christopher three times. He said that in the past, he had reacted the same way when he was once attacked by a grizzly bear, shooting without thought.

Judge Shannon Keyes states that although the gun shots were not accidental, as Seguin pointed and pulled the trigger, he did not intend to kill his son.

Keyes also accepted that Seguin was observed by all to be grief-stricken and bitterly remorseful ever since Christopher’s death, and that he loved his son, spending years supporting and caring for him despite his mental health programs and volatile temper.

Seguin states that as far as he is concerned, his life is over, as he sees his son’s face every day.

With no criminal history, Seguin is sentenced to a minimum security institution, with access to counselling for grief and loss.

“There is not much the court could do to him by way of sentence that would be more than the life sentence he has imposed upon himself,” Keyes states.