A Manitoba judge says jurors deciding the fate of two people accused of killing a five-year-old girl can't come back with a verdict of not guilty.

Judge Karen Simonsen says both Samantha Kematch and Karl McKay have admitted they are guilty of manslaughter in the death of Phoenix Sinclair.

She told the jury they can't be ruled by emotion or by public opinion.

Phoenix died in 2005. Jurors have heard evidence of horrific abuse, including being shot with a pellet gun and being beaten with a metal rod.

Jurors have sat and absorbed several weeks of testimony and are now charged with returning with a verdict, they can accept the charge of manslaughter or opt for a more severe verdict.

With files from Canadian Press

With a report from CTV's Kelly Dehn