The body armour worn by gangster Sanjeev Mann stopped some of the bullets fired at him by masked gunmen, a Calgary court heard Wednesday. Det. James Hands, of the Crime Scenes Unit, detailed the exhibits he seized in connection with the 2009 New Year's Day massacre of Mann and two others. Among the items collected by the officer was the Kevlar body armour Mann regularly wore after he had been shot at months earlier outside his parent's home. Hands showed jurors the back panel of the three piece vest Mann was wearing when two assailants opened fire at the Bolsa restaurant, on Macleod Tr. S. He said the vest, seized during Mann's autopsy, showed he had been hit in the back three times. "We found (the bullets) and cut them out," Hands said, as he showed jurors three holes in the outer lining of Mann's vest. Turning the panel around, Hands showed how the inside of the body armour remained unaffected. "The vest stopped the three bullets from penetrating," he said. Both the inside and outside of the panel, which Hands handled wearing gloves, appeared stained with blood. Charged with three counts of first-degree murder in the Jan. 1, 2009 deaths of Mann, his associate Aaron Bendle, and bystander Keni Su'a are Michael Roberto and Nathan Zuccherato. Crown prosecutor Shane Parker had earlier told jurors in his opening address that Mann was struck by four bullets. Meanwhile, despite arriving moments after emergency calls from Bolsa restaurant, Calgary cops could do nothing to save the gunned down victims, court was told. Const. Kory Gash was one of the first officers on the scene of the New Year's Day massacre and the first to enter the south Calgary eatery. Gash said he checked Su'a for signs of life and tried to help put pressure on his bullet wounds, but to no avail. Once he and other officers charged into the restaurant he found both Mann and Bendle on the floor. "I could observe two individuals down and an Asian female crouched down over the individual who was at the back of the restaurant," he said, referring to Mann's girlfriend, Annie Tran. "I checked for a pulse on the individual and based on no pulse and the magnitude of the blood that was there, he had passed," Gash said, adding he did the same with Bendle.
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