The prosecutor assigned to the case of three teenagers who allegedly beat a 67-year-old woman into critical condition says she is opposing bail and will seek adult sentences for them if convicted.

"If they were to be treated as minors and sentenced under the Youth Criminal Justice Act they would be facing a maximum of three years as far as a sentence is concerned," said prosecutor Karen Ohayon. "As adults, if they were sentenced as adults, they would be facing a maximum of life in prison."

One of the teens is 15; the other two 16-years-old. They have been charged with robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery and attempted murder.

A bail hearing is scheduled for Jun. 5, but the prosecution will oppose bail. The teens have opted for a trial by jury and will appear in court again in June.

Alleged crime

The elderly woman, who is Vietnamese, got off a bus at St. Vital on Henri Bourassa in Montreal North on Sunday night around midnight.

Police believe the woman was quickly surrounded by three assailants, but not before the bus had driven off. They said they believe the attackers did not have a weapon and beat the woman in the head with their hands. They stole her purse, but it was found about 30 feet away from the location of the assault.

As of Tuesday she was still in hospital in critical condition.

Police have ruled out gangs or hate crimes.

"There's no gang initiation or any link towards the nationality of the victim. One of the suspects is Latino. The other two are white. The woman is Asian basically hard to find an explanation towards the hate crime," said Raphael Bergeron of the Montreal Police.

Neighbourhood reeling

Residents of Montreal North were shocked at the incident.

"I find it frightening and dreadful," said one woman. "And stupid. That boys would do that for a purse."

A day after the incident, a small cluster of blood splatters was still visible on the sidewalk near the bus stop.