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Guilty verdict in Calgary triple-murder case

Douglas Garland is escorted into a Calgary police station in connection with the disappearance of Nathan O'Brien and his grandparents in Calgary, Alta., on July 14, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

CALGARY – A man accused of killing a Calgary couple and their grandson has been found guilty on three counts of first-degree murder.

Douglas Garland, who is 57, was charged in the deaths of Alvin and Kathy Liknes and five-year-old Nathan O’Brien in June 2014.

The victims’ family wept openly as the verdict was read.

Jurors deliberated between eight and nine hours before reaching a decision.

Justice David Gates had advised them to use common sense and to be sure of Garland’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt if they wished to convict him.

The couple and the boy disappeared after an estate sale at the Liknes home, where Nathan had stayed on a sleepover.

The Crown argued there was enough evidence to show Garland attacked the three in the home before taking them to his farm where he killed them, but the defence said there was no DNA evidence to prove he was ever in the house.