WATCH: Murder charge dropped against Michael Gero
In a rare move, the Crown has abruptly dropped the murder charge against Michael Gero, who was on trial for murdering his 19-year-old girlfriend in N.D.G. in 2013.
Gero was accused of shooting Sherri Thomas in the head. They lived together at an apartment on Grand Blvd. near St. Jacques St.
The jury was supposed to hear closing arguments in the trial at the Montreal courthouse Tuesday morning but instead the Crown decided to withdraw the charge of second degree murder, effectively ending the trial that lasted a little over two weeks.
Superior Court Justice Hélène Di Salvo told the jury this was a very rare and exceptional procedure. She thanked the seven women and five men for their patience and dedication before dismissing them.
The judge said the prosecutor did not have to provide an explanation in court.
But prosecutor Jacques Dagenais said last week - when closing arguments were supposed to begin and the jury was not present - that he no longer had the moral conviction to continue the case because he no longer believed that Gero shot and killed Thomas so he could not present final arguments to convince the jury Gero did it.
Dagenais cited Gero's alibi in court in which he said he was in the shower at the time of the shooting. Dagenais also said the only concrete evidence he had was Gero's fingerprints on the firearm.
Dagenais requested a directed verdict in which the judge would tell the jury to acquit Gero of murder.
But Di Salvo refused, saying she could only do that if there was an absence of evidence and that wasn't the case here.
Gero ended up pleading guilty to the remaining charges of possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of a firearm despite a prohibition to do so.
The judge will sentence Gero tomorrow.