Shortly after the verdict for the 19-year-old man who was accused in the first-degree murder of Sgt. Andrew Harnett was announced, the Calgary Police Service issued a statement.

"Today’s verdict is a difficult one for members of the Calgary Police Service, and for Sgt. Harnett’s family and friends. We are confident that the solid case brought to the court will withstand the test of further judicial review. We would like to thank the CPS Homicide Unit and Crown Prosecutor Mike Ewenson, for their exceptional professionalism throughout exceptionally trying circumstances," the statement read.

Chief of Police, Constable Mark Neufeld said that this wasn't the verdict that was hoped for. 

“Nothing, however, that could have happened today would have changed the fact we have lost a friend, a colleague, a leader, and more importantly Andrew's loved ones have lost a spouse, a brother and son,” he said in a press release.

“We will never forget our brother Andrew. He was someone who made a large impact and touched a great many in our Membership. We stand with his loved ones and family in mourning his loss,” said Chris Young, Vice President of the Calgary Police Association.

Earlier in the day, Justice Anna Loparco found that the 19-year-old, who was 17 at the time of the New Year's Eve hit-and-run, ruled that she would not find him guilty of first-degree murder, but instead found him guilty of manslaughter.

Loparco addressed those gathered in court, saying that the trial had been a long and traumatic one.

"I know that this has been a difficult and emotional trial for all involved; a grieving family had to revisit testimony surrounding the tragic events of December 31 2020 for the second time. While the accused was found not guilty of murder, I stress that he still has been found guilty of committing a culpable homicide," she said. "I say this so the family appreciates that in finding the accused guilty of manslaughter, I have found he has committed one of the most serious offences contained in our criminal code."

The 19-year-old was remanded to custody until sentencing. 

Sgt. Harnett was a 12-year veteran of the Calgary Police Service. Previously, he served as a military police officer. He was promoted to Sergeant in 2019 and was assigned to District 5 in Calgary. He died in the hospital on December 31, 2020, an hour after the hit-and-run. 

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