Escaped killer had no credibility, parole board said

Despite the fact that the National Parole Board said imprisoned murderer Andrew Wood had no credibility, Corrections Canada put him in a minimum-security prison with no fences and no armed guards. On June 13, Wood, who was serving a life sentence for second-degree murder, escaped from Frontenac Institution, in Kingston, Ontario (details of the escape in a previous post). National Parole Board records (available after the jump) reveal that Wood was denied parole three times because he appeared to be lying to the board about the murder that put him behind bars.

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Murderer escapes from no-security federal prison


View Frontenac Institution in a larger map

Andrew John Wood (inset), a 42-year-old imprisoned murderer who escaped from a penitentiary in Kingston yesterday (June 13), was supposed to be a low risk to escape. That’s one of the key criteria considered when federal prison bosses decide which convicts get the privilege of staying in a minimum-security pen. Wood was enjoying the relative comfort of life at Frontenac Institution, a low-security, suburban penitentiary where convicts have the run of the joint. The prison also has a chronic problem of prisoners taking off to go shopping at a mall across the street and at a nearby liquor store (after the jump, read about the con caught in the nearby grocery store with a shopping list and a wad of cash). Shopping doesn’t appear to have been on Wood’s agenda, since he hasn’t reappeared. The map above reveals just how close and enticing suburban attractions, including the LCBO outlet, are to the prison, which does not have any fences, walls or armed guards.

Twenty years ago, Wood shot a man to death. Robert Ryan Glenn, 21, of Richgrove Drive in Weston, Ontario, was found on the shoulder of a side road in Albion in February 1989. He had been shot in the head. Wood was convicted of second-degree murder. He lived in North York at the time.

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Who killed Sharmini Anandavel?

Precisely 10 years ago today, 15-year-old Sharmini Anandavel (inset) left her Toronto, Ontario, apartment, telling her parents she had a new job to go to. Four months later, Sharmini’s skeletal remains were found scattered in a ravine about two kilometres from her home. Her murder has never been solved. But police have always had a good suspect, convicted stalker Stanley Tippett, who is back behind bars. A detective who spent a year trying to solve Sharmini’s murder says Tippett was never “eliminated” as the possible killer.

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If Steven Truscott didn’t kill Lynne Harper, who did?

On a warm summer evening half a century ago, June 9, 1959, 12-year-old Lynne Harper (inset) of Clinton, Ontario, quarrelled at home with her parents, Leslie and Shirley, before setting off after dinner toward a nearby school playground. There she met a slightly older schoolmate, who had his bicycle. She asked for a ride to a nearby highway. Steven Truscott agreed. Lynn clambered onto the handlebars of the 14-year-old boy’s bike and they pedalled off. It was a brief ride that would set in motion a 48-year-long chain of events that shattered two families; that horrified a community; that subverted justice and forced a country to question its morality and the virtuousness of its criminal justice system.

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"Never too young to die"

Have you figured it out yet? What monumental event in the history of Canadian criminal justice passes a significant anniversary this week? I’ve been providing clues on Twitter (@cancrime). Here’s a recap: Clue #6: Diefenbaker’s dilemma Clue #5: “We find the defendant guilty as charged with a plea for mercy.” Clue #4: A last supper…

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Ontario government cuts off online inquest access

The Ontario government has suddenly slammed shut the virtual window through which citizens could see the outcome of public inquests. Apparently there’s some legal question about whether public access should be permitted on the ‘net.

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Faint hope reporting malfunction

The federal government wants to abolish the faint hope clause, a measure in the Criminal Code that allows imprisoned killers to ask to have their parole ineligibility reduced. The Tory government announced the get-tough measure today. It’s a fix for a perceived problem that affects a small percentage of murderers, as the government’s own graphic (above) reveals: It shows that less than two in every 10 jailed killers who is eligible to ask for an earlier parole date has had a decision rendered since the first faint hope hearing in 1987. The table above is excerpted from the Corrections and Conditional Release Statistical Overview, Annual Report 2008, published by the federal government. After the jump, a look at the important detail in the faint hope process that’s missing from many media reports.

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A defining moment in a century of criminal justice

A momentous anniversary is fast approaching this month in the history of criminal justice in Canada in the last century. Do you know what it is? Post your guesses here in the comments. I’ll provide clues, beginning today, leading up to the day. » Follow the clues on Cancrime’s Twitter feed (@cancrime)….

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