ULUTH, Minn. - A jury in St. Louis County District Court has convicted a man in the fatal shooting at a party in 2009.
The jury found Stephen Cobenais guilty of second-degree murder in the death of Mario Highler. The 27-year-old Cobenais was also found guilty of being a felon in possession of a firearm.
The trial began almost two weeks ago. The jury began deliberating late Thursday afternoon and reached a verdict Friday morning shortly after resuming deliberations.
Prosecutor Leslie Beiers told jurors in closing arguments that the shooting was "a tragedy, not a tragic accident" which was "fueled by anger and alcohol." WDIO-TV reports defense attorney David Malban argued that Cobenais didn't mean to shoot Highler and pulled out a gun because he wanted him to leave the party.