A 38-year-old man accused in connection with the deaths of two boys who were killed by a python in northern New Brunswick has elected to be tried by judge and jury.

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Jean Claude Savoie, formerly of Campbellton, is charged with criminal negligence causing the deaths of 4-year-old Noah Barthe and his 6-year-old brother, Connor.

Savoie is the former owner of the Reptile Ocean pet store in Campbellton and lived in the apartment above the store.

The two boys were sleeping in the living room of the apartment in August 2013 when they were strangled to death by a 100-pound African rock python.

A preliminary hearing for Savoie has been set for November 24 in Campbellton provincial court.  If convicted, he faces a maximum of life in prison.

Source: CBC