Double cop killer denied release after denying he pulled trigger 43 years ago

Richard AmbroseMore than 40 years after Richard Ambrose (inset) was sentenced to hang for murdering two New Brunswick police officers, he is continuing to deny that he shot the victims. At a hearing in British Columbia this month, Ambrose, 68, told the parole board that he was only hired to “bury something” – he just didn’t know ‘something’ was the bodies of two policemen, Const. Michael O’Leary and Cpl. Aurele Bourgeois of the Moncton police department. At a hearing February 1 (read parole document, after the jump), the board refused Ambrose’s bid for full parole, noting that in the past year he has becoming increasingly hostile with prison staff and he was charged twice with breaking prison rules. Ambrose, who has changed his name to Bergeron, was ordered to remain behind bars in B.C.

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“Aggressive, hostile,” double cop killer fails to overturn parole denial

thumb_ambroseAn imprisoned double cop killer sentenced to death 40 years ago has failed again in a bid to overturn a parole board decision that denied him freedom. Richard Ambrose, 66, is confined to a medium-security prison in British Columbia but he desperately wants out. He is “aggressive,”  “hostile,” “confrontational,” has threatened his lawyers and, recently, a psychologist concluded he is a “high risk” to reoffend, according to documents acquired from the Parole Board of Canada. In 1974, Ambrose (inset) and career criminal James Hutchison shot two Moncton, N.B. city police officers in the head and buried the bodies in shallow graves. Quickly caught and convicted, Ambrose and Hutchison were condemned to hang but the sentences were commuted to life in prison after the abolition of the death penalty in Canada. Ambrose has been rebuffed twice in the past three years in complaints to a parole appeal body.

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4 reasons Justin Bourque may be a good candidate for parole

Justin BourqueWhat happens to Justin Bourque (inset) if he is convicted of murdering three RCMP officers and wounding two others in New Brunswick? Will the 24 year old spend decades penned in a small concrete box, languishing there until he dies of old age? Maybe not. Bourque, who faces three counts of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder in a shooting rampage in Moncton, N.B., on June 4, 2014, could be a good candidate for parole, some day, given the bits and pieces of information that are now available. (UPDATE: On July 31, 2014, Bourque was declared fit to stand trial. SECOND UPDATE: On August 8, 2014, Bourque pleaded guilty to three counts of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder and was subsequently sentenced to 75 years in prison with no eligibility for parole, the first person in Canada to face such a sentence since changes to the criminal law in 2011 )

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Court refuses to block cash award to cop killer Peter Collins

Peter CollinsAn imprisoned cop killer will get the $9,500 he was awarded by a human rights tribunal, after he complained that he was being forced to stand up in prison during head counts, an act that he said was difficult and painful because of chronic and severe back pain he suffers. A new decision by the Federal Court of Appeal blocks an attempt by Ottawa to stop the payout to Peter Collins (inset), who murdered an Ottawa policeman in 1983. Collins was awarded the money by the Canadian Human Rights Commission after a hearing into his complaints about how he was being treated in prison.

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Notorious double cop killer Hutchison dies in prison

A career criminal who narrowly escaped the hangman for cold bloodedly killing two Moncton police officers has died after more than 36 years behind bars. James Hutchison (inset), 83, died Saturday evening at maximum-security Kingston Penitentiary, in Kingston, Ontario. Corrections Canada notified Hutchison’s sister, who lives in the Toronto area, but has not given a cause or exact time of death, said criminologist Matthew Yeager, who had been helping the ailing murderer in a desperate last-ditch bid for freedom.

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Cop killer Munro gets more passes to pursue yoga plans

Craig Munro (inset), an imprisoned killer and former heroin addict who murdered a Toronto police officer during a botched robbery, wants to be become a yoga teacher. The Parole Board of Canada has indulged his strange career plans, agreeing to continue to allow Munro a series of passes that permit him to roam free from prison. Munro, who is behind bars in British Columbia, appeared recently before the board, which noted (full decision after jump) that he seems “over confident and somewhat naive relative to the challenges” he’ll face when he’s free from prison.

(UPDATED May 27 – This post sparked an animated debate on my Facebook page, including comments by a number of ex-cons who have some valuable insight)

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Double cop killer James Hutchison near death in prison

Father time is completing the sentence the hangman could not. James Hutchison (inset), the imprisoned 83-year-old who murdered two Moncton police officers in 1974, could die within weeks, a parole board panel was told Friday during a hearing (I was the only reporter at the hearing) inside maximum-security Kingston Penitentiary in Kingston, Ontario. Because of a sudden, dramatic decline in the prisoner’s health, the parole board members made the surprise decision to adjourn the hearing, suggesting that Hutchison quickly submit a new application for a “compassionate, end-of-life” release.

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Firearms kill most police officers who die on duty

The death of a Toronto police officer today, Sgt. Ryan Russell, 35, who was apparently run down by a crazed driver in a stolen snowplow, is a shocking, but relatively rare event. Statistics Canada figures (docs after the jump) on the deaths of police officers in the line of duty show that only a few are killed on the job, 125 in a 40-year span, and roughly nine out of every 10 police officers killed while on duty died at the hands of an assailant with a gun. Taxi driving is the most dangerous occupation in Canada, in terms of the risk of being murdered on the job.

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Parole of cop killer Craig Munro reconsidered, not cancelled

Outrage erupted after the decision in March this year to grant imprisoned cop killer Craig Munro (inset) unescorted passes to leave prison. Munro nearly lost his freedom because of the publicity the decision attracted, Cancrime learned. The halfway house that agreed to accept the notorious killer backed out, citing “considerable media coverage,” a parole document (available after the jump) reveals. Another halfway house agreed to accept him. The parole board recently reviewed its initial decision to release Munro because of the change of plans.

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Cop killer Ambrose denied parole after “evasive” answers

Richard AmbroseA double cop killer has been denied parole after a hearing in which he was “evasive,” “condescending” and “sarcastic,” a document obtained by Cancrime shows. Richard Ambrose (inset), who murdered two Moncton, New Brunswick police officers – along with accomplice James Hutchison – in 1974, appeared this month before two members of the National Parole Board at a hearing held in Alberta, where he’s serving a life sentence in prison. Ambrose and Hutchison killed Cpl. Aurele Bourgeois and Const. Michael O’Leary in a horrifying slaying that earned them a trip to the gallows. They were spared the death penalty when capital punishment was abolished in Canada in 1976.

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