Trial in 2016 Connaught Avenue shooting drawing to close

Closing arguments were heard Wednesday at the second-degree murder trial of William Dwayne McDonald.

McDonald, 28, has pleaded not guilty in the shooting death of 26-year-old Emmanuel Awai in Dec. 2016.

Awai was found shot in the head in a Connaught Avenue apartment.

While the Crown claims McDonald killed Awai over drugs and jewelry, the defence argues the accused wasn't there on the night of the shooting.

Crown Attorney Meredith Gardiner told the court that Awai was involved in drug dealing with McDonald, but things turned deadly that night.

Gardiner told the court a Crown witness testified that they saw someone rushing from the scene that night.

“The accused came out of the apartment 10 to 20 seconds after the last shot was fired...the accused then texted, ‘Done.'”

The jury has seen dozens of text messages after they heard that a cell phone belonging to McDonald was found in pieces along Highbury Avenue.

Gardiner added, “The real reason the accused broke the phone and threw it away was...William McDonald murdered Emmanuel Awai."

During its closing the defence told the jury that McDonald is not the one responsible for the murder, saying he wasn't even in the apartment at the time of the shooting.

McDonald's lawyer David Stoesser instead pointed the finger at Awai's brother or possibly someone else for the death.

"Abraham [Awai] was there when his brother was killed and he fled the scene…there is no proof...that William McDonald was in the apartment."

As for the messages between the victim and the accused, Stoesser said, "Out of all of the texts between Emmanuel and William, none of them have any anger towards each other."

Before wrapping up he added, "If this was a murder plot, it was horribly, horribly planned."

Justice Jonathon George is expected to charge the jury on Thursday so deliberations can begin.