Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Schoenborn denied release by review panel
Despite his plea to be freed immediately, convicted child-killer Allan Schoenborn will remain in psychiatric care — a decision he ultimately said he agreed with.
The British Columbia Review Board at the Forensic Psychiatric Institute in Port Coquitlam said Tuesday that Schoenborn poses a serious threat of violence to the public.
Schoenborn was convicted in February of killing his three children, but was found not criminally responsible due to mental illness.
He had asked the board earlier Tuesday for a conditional discharge.
Upon hearing the board's decision, Schoenborn said he agreed. "I think you decided right for me and the public," he told the panel.
He also asked panelists not to allow the children's mother, Darcie Clarke, to make a victim impact statement, calling it hysterical.
The panel disregarded the request and did hear a statement from Clarke, who discovered the children's bodies in her Merritt, B.C., home after they were murdered two years ago.
She told the panel that she'll never be able to get the image out of her head.
"I fear if he ever gets out, I will have to go into hiding for the rest of my life," Clarke said in her statement, parts of which were read out to the panel.
The prosecution asked that Schoenborn be held in custody for at least another year. Psychiatrist Dr. Johann Brink told the panel that Schoenborn remains a risk to both the public and himself.
At his trial, Schoenborn described in grisly detail how he killed his two sons and daughter. The judge found that he was in a psychotic state at the time.
In February, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Robert Powers, who heard the three-month trial in Kamloops without a jury, found that the killings were deliberate and planned by Schoenborn, but that he was not sane at the time.
Powers said Schoenborn had to remain in custody and appear before the British Columbia Review Board within 90 days to determine where he would be held.
I think it is the right decision not to release this man at this time. He was just recently found not criminally responsible and needs a longer period for treatment of his mental disorder, as he is still a risk to himself and to the public. I feel that it was the right decision to find him NCR as he was incapable of truly knowing what he was doing at the time, therefore making his actions involuntary, unconscious and not blameworthy.