'I can't hold these grudges': Windsor shooting victim speaks out after verdict
A Windsor man might never know who shot him and he’s okay with that.
Devonte Pierce was a bouncer when was shot and wounded inside a downtown Windsor nightclub almost three years ago.
In superior court on Thursday, the two accused of attempted murder in that crime were acquitted.
In an exclusive interview, CTV Windsor’s Sacha Long sat down with Pierce Friday to get his reaction to the verdict.
Pierce had a gunshot fired into his back, narrowly missing his spine. But instead of holding on to anger, Pierce looks back on the 2014 incident as ‘a life lesson.’
The 23-year-old says he forgives the unknown individual who almost ended his life.
“It made me realize, life is too short,” says Pierce. “It could be over in a second.”
Pierce speaks from experience.
“I got time to register that something was on my back and the gun went off,” he says.
Towards the end of the night on Oct. 5, 2014, Pierce was asked to remove a group of rowdy men, that's when violence erupted.
“I thought someone punched me in the back when I first felt the pop,” says Pierce. “But when I looked down, something went wrong. I clued in I got shot.”
There was a smell of smoke and people inside started running outside of the club. Pierce also left, his shirt wet with blood, unsure just how badly he was hurt.
“At this point, I'm feeling like one - am I going to paralyzed, two - am I going to bleed out, three - I need to get help.”
The bullet cut through his kidney and sliced his liver, but narrowly missed his spine.
Physically, he's back to full health, but the memory of that night still haunts him and Pierce admits he's always watching his back.
“Like I'm at a restaurant, I don't like facing my back to the public, little things.”
Pierce didn't see who shot him that night.
Kevin Nyadu, 22, was found not guilty of attempted murder and Shadrack Amankwa, 26 was found not guilty of being an accessory.
Their defence lawyer says someone else shot Pierce.
Pierce might never know who shot him and he's ok with that.
“Even if I did, I wouldn't have a problem saying I forgive you. That’s the way you have to live,” says Pierce.
Pierce says he was doing his job that night. He thinks the shooter just made a bad mistake and he doesn't care that he hasn't been found.
Instead, the 23-year-old sees this experience as a life lesson, one that's made him stronger and has set him up for a life of success.
“You can't let these experiences change you. If it does, let it change you for the better,” says Pierce. “I can't hold these grudges against people shooting me, doing me wrong. That's their ignorance. I pray for them, good energy their way.”
Pierce says excited for his future, feeling big things are coming his way.
He's about to launch his own YouTube channel. He's working on an invention and, he'll be a model at Toronto Fashion Week.