Guy Field is Dead
I was in my office talking with a colleague when I got the call that I really wished I hadn’t answered on speakerphone:
– This is the National Parole Board, is this Mr. Allore?
Before I had the chance to tell my colleague that, no, I did not have a relative serving hardtime, he had the grace to discretely leave my office.
– Mr. Allore, we were curious… why do you wish to attend the parole hearings of ten Quebec offenders?
Yeah, so I wrote a letter to the chair of the parole board, Ian Glen. So what? Doesn’t everyone?
I have to confess I have a kink when it comes to Quebec crime. I’m pretty much an expert on the era of 1977 – 1981; that grand time when Quebec cops styled themselves after Kojak, smoking cigarettes and sporting really REALLY big ties. Actually what led to my contacting the parole board was a communique I’d read on Corrections Canada’s notice board:
Décès d’un détenu de l’établissement Archambault
Le 21 octobre 2003 vers 8h40, Guy Field, un détenu de l’établissement Archambault, pénitencier fédéral à sécurité moyenne, est décédé de mort naturelle au Centre régional de soins de l’établissement. Agé de 70 ans, Guy Field purgeait depuis le 2 novembre 1978 une sentence indéterminée pour meurtre au 2e degré.
Guy Field was dead. He died in prison. Now I am practically the last person on the planet who knows who Guy Field was and what he did to be sent away for 25 years.
Guy Field was the “monstre de Levis”. In 1977 he terrorized a tiny suburb on the South shore of Quebec City. Field abducted a child, strangled her and performed unspeakable acts on her dead body. Google Guy Field today and you will find nothing; only this brief blurb – in French – on a corrections newsletter. There is no record of the harm he inflicted, and the lives he destroyed; which in a way I suppose is fitting and just.
But it got me thinking. A mandatory life sentence in Canada – assuming all parole requests where denied – is twenty-five years. In November 2004 – right around the time that Field died of “natural causes” – he might have been eligable for parole. Did Field die naturally, or did someone take matters into their own hands and stop Field.
It’s not an impropable thought. In the last year, five prisoners have died at Archambault penitentiary; all deaths were “morts naturelles”.
But this is a sidetrack to my main concern. Guy Field got me thinking – All those offenders who were put away between 1977 – 1981; what ever happened to them? It’s been twenty-five years; there time’s up. They’ll be getting out now, or in the next few years, if not sooner if they were granted parole.
So this led me to writing the Parole Board. I went trolling for bad guys. I picked ten of the worst offenders from the late seventies – guys that did really unspeakable stuff (crime buffs take note: a good source are the old “Almanachs Du Crime Au Quebec” which were published by Photo Police. Also note: anything by Photo Police is not for the weak stomached).
So I wrote the parole board and asked to see the parole determinations for these ten offenders, and if they were still imprisoned, for the opportunity to attend a future parole hearing. This is my right, and any Canadian’s right, as a citizen of that country.
– Mr. Allore, not to pry, but does this have anything to do with your sister, are you thinking that these men might have in someway been responsible?
I couldn’t believe the parole officer would have the nerve to ask this – under the rules of Access to Information, they have no right to ask such a question. I took it in stride:
– Madam, as you can see, most of these offenders were imprisoned BEFORE my sister died. So it would be unlikely that they were responsible for her death.
Alright…. Well, we’re going to grant your request. It just seems odd. people don’t usually ask to attend ten parole hearings.
I have no intention of attending ten parole hearings, but I didn’t tell her that; this was my way of finding out if these guys were still incarcerated. If they were, then NPB would have to notify me of their next parole hearing (pretty clever, I know; but it wasn’t my idea – I got it from a victims advocate in Toronto).
Then again maybe I will attend all ten hearings. Shouldn’t someone stand up and tell people about what has been forgotten? Shouldn’t someone speak for those victims who have been silenced and cannot speak for themselves?