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Witness tells trial he lied to 911 about Christmas Day shooting incident

Two of the guns seized after a shooting on Christmas Day in 2015 are shown on an evidence table in P.E.I. Supreme Court on Thursday. Matthew Lindsey Clarke and Brodie Joseph McQuaid were shot with the .22-calibre shown in the top of the photo.
Two of the guns seized after a shooting on Christmas Day in 2015 are shown on an evidence table in P.E.I. Supreme Court on Thursday. Matthew Lindsey Clarke and Brodie Joseph McQuaid were shot with the .22-calibre shown in the top of the photo.

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. - A man who was inside a house where two people were shot said he lied to a 911 operator about what happened because he didn’t want anyone to get in trouble.

Nick Watts made that statement during his testimony on the second day of trial for Matthew Lindsey Clarke and Brodie Joseph McQuaid in P.E.I. Supreme Court in Charlottetown on Thursday.

Clarke and McQuaid were charged with break and enter and assault after an incident on Christmas Day 2015 that ended with both men shot.

Matthew Brian Misener was sentenced in February to one year in jail on three charges that included assault with a weapon after shooting both men.

Both men were shot in Misener’s home where he and Watts said they were having a few drinks.

Related: Trial begins for P.E.I. pair who were shot on Christmas Day in 2015

Clarke and McQuaid went to the house after phone calls and messages between several people were exchanged about Watts sleeping with someone else’s girlfriend.

During his testimony, Watts said he ended up in a scuffle in the kitchen with Clarke, who pinned him against the stove.

Misener shot Clarke and hit him in the head with the butt of a rifle, ending the scuffle, Watts said.

Clarke was shot in the upper leg.

McQuaid was also shot three times, including once in the neck.

Watts was the one who called 911 and a recording of the call was played in court, along with a phone conversation he had with the RCMP.

During the 911 call, Watts told the operator there were people fooling around shooting guns when someone got grazed in the neck by a bullet.

When the RCMP called back asking how many people were outside firing weapons, Watts responded McQuaid was hit by the stock of a gun.

“He didn’t get shot,” Watts said during the call.

He lied again several times, including when the RCMP asked how many guns were in the house and Watts said there were none.

In court, Watts said he felt a little ashamed for not taking the matter seriously during the calls and he was just trying to keep everyone out of trouble.

Under cross-examination, Watts said it was possible he opened the door when McQuaid and Clarke arrived.

Watts also said he didn’t think Clarke ever punched him.

The trial resumes Friday morning.

 

rross@theguardian.pe.ca

twitter.com/ryanrross

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