Murder in Stoneham: ready to steal, but not to kill, testifies the alleged accomplice

Éric Guénette, the man who escorted the Achraf Thimouni shooter back to Stoneham in the summer of 2022, claims that he was “embarked into a situation” and did not know the shooter’s true intentions.

Accused of second-degree murder, Éric Guénette, 35, testified during his trial at the Quebec courthouse on Friday.

During his trial, he testified that on August 8, 2022, he drove his friend, Kevin Prévost-Bouchard, back to meet the victim. At that time he had to deliver a kilo of drugs.

On the way, Guénette testified that his friend told him: we will do it. The accused claims to have understood that his passenger intended to steal the delivery man’s cocaine, as he had seen him do the previous month, but not to kill him.

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Achraf Thimoumi

Photo: Facebook

After meeting the victim and asking him to follow them to Chemin des Famille, Prévost-Bouchard allegedly loaded his firearm and removed his shoes, according to Guénette. Once on the small, remote path, Guénette says that everything happened very quickly.

Once there, he disembarked. I had time to put both feet on the ground and I heard the gunshotshe explained quickly.

Brother for life

Prévost-Bouchard has already admitted his guilt for the murder last March and is serving a life sentence in penitentiary. The latter fired six projectiles at Thimouni, a 20-year-old student from Morocco who was to deliver him a kilo of cocaine, worth $35,000 to $37,000, according to Guénette.

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Kevin Prévost-Bouchard is charged with the first degree murder of Achraf Thimoumi.

Photo: Facebook

Guénette testified that after the murder, Prévost-Bouchard entered the vehicle and high-fived him, declaring: we are made brothers for life. I’m on my third.

The accused said he understood that the men were bound by the secrecy of the event and as long as he kept it, everything would be fine for him, without offering any further explanation.

Pogné

At the start of his testimony, Guénette claimed to have already accompanied Prévost-Bouchard during an armed robbery linked to narcotics in a hotel in Chicoutimi, a few weeks before the murder.

His lawyer, Me Louis Belliard, questioned him as to why he agreed to participate in the Prévost-Bouchard plan on August 8, 2022.

Guénette replied that she had no choice. I was already caught with a stunt he pulled on me, then he was connected to a street gang. If I say no, he’s a guy who is quite violent and aggressive.

He says he witnessed this violence once in his garage when Kevin Prévost-Bouchard had gotten angry at someonewithout hitting him.

He adds that Prévost-Bouchard was armed all the time. You never know what will happen with Kevinhe testified.

An unexpected journey

Éric Guénette also explained that it was an accident that led to him being in the car with Prévost-Bouchard on the day of the event.

The duo had agreed that Guénette would bring Prévost-Bouchard back to Lac-Saint-Jean after the latter left his car in a garage in Quebec. However, on the way, Prévost-Bouchard fell asleep at the wheel and had to have his car towed.

Guénette would then have met her on Highway 73 heading south between l’Étape and Québec. It is a little before that Prévost-Bouchard gets into his car and learns that they will make a stop in Stoneham to pick up a shipment of drugs with the intention to do the delivery guy.

Guénette added that after the murder, Prévost-Bouchard allegedly changed his clothes before participating in a call with someone.

During this conversation, the murderer assured that his companion is reliable. He then allegedly insisted on destroying their cell phones, which he did later that evening.

Cross-examination

During cross-examination, the prosecutor in the case, Me Fabien Villemaire, attempted to demonstrate that the accused knew Prévost-Bouchard’s true intention much earlier in the day. He played an extract from the interrogation where Guenette explains to the police officer what he understood from the sentence: We do it, we kill it while specifying that it was not him who shot.

Guenette maintained during cross-examination that he did not want to participate in a murder and that he believed his friend was preparing to commit a robbery.

I didn’t ask any questions. I wanted to know as little as possiblehe defended himself.

During his opening statement on May 13, the prosecutor told the jury that Éric Guénette knew Prévost-Bouchard’s intentions. Me Fabien Villemaire added that if the accused showed willful blindness, he should also be held responsible for the murder.

The evidence is now closed in the case, and the defense will present its closing arguments next week.

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