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Father of slain Granby girl granted conditional day release to halfway house

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Warning: This story contains details of child abuse.

The father of the Granby girl who died tragically in April 2019 has been granted conditional day parole and will be transferred to a halfway house as soon as a place becomes available.

In a dozen-page decision made public on Wednesday, the Parole Board wrote that it "is of the opinion that you will not present an unacceptable risk to society if you are granted day parole and that your release will contribute to the protection of society by promoting your reintegration into society as a law-abiding citizen."

The commission noted that the 34-year-old had made "gains and progress in all areas of intervention" related to his case.

It noted that, according to the reports concerning him, his sense of responsibility, motivation and potential for social reintegration "are all assessed as high."

In addition, the psychological assessment concludes that he presents "a low-moderate risk of violent recidivism."

SHOCKING STORY

The victim in this case, a seven-year-old girl, died of asphyxiation after being wrapped in adhesive tape.

The child's father was sentenced to four years' imprisonment in January 2022 after pleading guilty the previous month to a reduced charge of forcible confinement.

His wife (the girl's stepmother) was convicted of the unpremeditated murder of the child and forcible confinement and sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for 13 years.

This was the man's third attempt to obtain day parole. An initial attempt last April failed, and he returned to the case by appealing against the decision, an appeal that was rejected in turn last September.

MOTHER STILL OPPOSED

As with the previous application, the child's paternal grandmother opposed the release of her son at the hearing of his application on Nov. 30, saying she feared for her safety and that of the other members of the child's family.

His transfer to a halfway house, where he will have to remain until the end of his sentence, comes with a number of conditions, including a ban on contact with other people connected with the tragedy.

He will be forbidden to be in the presence of children under the age of 16 and will have to report any relationship, sexual or otherwise, with a woman. He will also have to continue his psychological counselling.

The child's death shocked the whole of Quebec and led to the creation of a Commission of Inquiry into Children's Rights and Youth Protection, chaired by Régine Laurent, whose report has yet to be implemented.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on Dec. 6, 2023. 

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