The parents of a 35-year-old man who was shot dead on the University of Alberta campus in Edmonton a decade ago are angry over a recent Supreme Court ruling allowing their son’s killer to qualify for parole much earlier than expected. .
Armored car guard Travis Bamkardner, who pleaded guilty to shooting three of his colleagues in June 2012, was sentenced to 40 years without life in prison.
But due to a recent Supreme Court ruling, he could qualify for parole in 15 years.
Diane and Mike Ilesik, his son Brian Ilesik, one of Pamkardner’s victims, criticized the decision at a news conference on Tuesday.
“Both Mike and I are tired of what the Supreme Court has done,” Diane Ilesick said.
She said she and her husband had lost faith in the federal government because the federal government had not taken action against the decision.
The court ruling is unconstitutional
Canadians face up to 25 years of life imprisonment without parole for first-degree murder.
The Conservative federal government of Stephen Harper introduced a sentencing rule in 2011 that gave judges the ability to stack ineligible periods for multiple murders.
In a unanimous ruling last month, the Supreme Court ruled that the provision was unconstitutional because it violated Article 12 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Section 12 protects the right not to receive cruel and extraordinary punishment.
“Such punishments are degrading in nature and incompatible with human dignity because they deny the possibility of criminals being reintegrated into society,” Chief Justice Richard Wagner wrote in the judgment.
PalmCardner was the first person to be convicted under a new rule in Canada.
His lawyer, Peter Royal, has not yet responded to an interview request.
The federal government may take action, says the MP
Ilesics members of Conservative MP Michael Cooper held a press conference Tuesday at a hotel in northwest Edmonton.
The St. Albert-Edmonton MP, who has known the couple since 2016, called the Supreme Court ruling “unjust and outrageous.”
The federal government should rescind this rarely used decision of the charter or enact new legislation that would allow judges to impose an ineligible term of more than 25 years for perpetrators of multiple murders.
“This is not something to be taken lightly, but in this case, the court really misunderstood,” Cooper said.
There is also the Alberta government Nonetheless calls on the federal government to implement the clause.
The federal government respects the court ruling
The federal government, which has backed the judges’ choice to impose a longer period of parole disqualification in some cases, has said it will respect the Supreme Court’s ruling.
“We respect the independence of the judiciary. We value its unanimous decision and will carefully evaluate the way forward to ensure that the system works best to prevent crime and hold accountable to criminals,” said Chandelle Aberdeen, a spokeswoman for Justice Minister David Lametti. An email.
“Murder is one of the most serious crimes in criminal law and attracts its most severe punishment – the mandatory life sentence – the Supreme Court’s ruling does not change that fact.
“Additionally, eligibility for parole does not guarantee that a person will receive parole. The Parole Board of Canada will determine whether Mr. Travis Pamgardner, like other offenders, is eligible for parole after 25 years.”
Although legal, Abertin said, “the application of the rule is very serious because it has the effect of suspending the legal protections guaranteed by the Charters of Rights and Freedoms.”
Pamkardner’s case in Alberta alone is not likely to backfire.
The Alberta Court of Appeals ruled that the sentences of the four convicts and several murderers – Derek Sheretsky, Edward Downey, Joshua Frank and Jason Klaus – would vary after sentencing.
Last month, Robert Keith Major pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree murder in the Hinton murders of 24-year-old Mchale Busch and his toddler Nova McConnell.
The case was adjourned pending the verdict of the Major in anticipation of the judgment of the Supreme Court.
Verna Sand, a close family friend of Bush’s fiance and Noah’s father, Cody McConnell, said she and other supporters could not believe the Supreme Court ruling.
He said the decision was disappointing because it gives priority to the rights and freedoms of criminals.
“We care more about the rights and freedoms of murdered families and people in our courts,” he said.