No Canadian justice issue gets tempers flairing quite like parole. That’s because with Canadian justice – and its restorative bent, quite unique compared to the punitive absolutism of the American system – the stakes are so high.
(you had me at “you diddling peice of crap”)
Canadian victim activists Carolyn Gardner and the family of Dolly Prioriello have started a Facebook petition to amend the Crinimal Code of Canada and Corrections and Conditional Release Act to stipulate that convicted murders should only have parole hearings every 5 years as opposed to the current 2 years.
Yesterday I learned that a Quebec offender released after serving 25 years of a life sentence for murder – a man who appeared to be on the right track and claimed to only what to get on with his life – had his parole revoked for his recent involvement with drugs and prostitution (I can’t mention his name for personal reasons, but you can check out the details here). He and Jean “Johnny” Charland were convicted of the 1978 Lennoxville murders of Raymond Grimard and Manon Bergeron.
Now comes the strange and heated battle over Eric Norman Fish (aka Eric Norman Lafontaine), a B.C. offender given early parole in 2004, who promptly went out and murdered 75-year-old Vernon resident Bill Abramenko. I blogged about the case in the Summer of 2004, and how then Federal Conservative justice critic, Vic Toews was critical of the case, saying it exemplified everything that was wrong with the Canadian parole system.
Well it turns out that blog post has developed into a battle ground between family members of Fish / Lafontaine who in the course of 8 posted comments continue to cast missives at Fish’s stepfather and Fish himself (it doesn’t help that the step-father was an apparent child molester). If you want a glimpse of how truly hot and personal these matters can be, take a look at the volleys which have been going on for some 4 years now.