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Killer of Ashlee Hyatt sentenced to prison, probation

Charrie Hyatt receives supportive hug following sentencing.
April 17, 2013 - 5:33 PM

UPDATE: Killer of Ashlee Hyatt will spend 9 months behind bars

5:00 p.m. April 17

The girl responsible for stabbing Ashlee Hyatt to death at a house party in Peachland in 2010 will serve a 18-month prison sentence, but only nine months behind bars.

At a sentencing hearing today, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Geoff Barrow sentenced her nine months in jail and nine months under supervision in the community. She will spend another 18 months on probation.

The victim's mother Charrie Hyatt says she's glad the girl is getting the full three-year sentence allowed under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

“We wanted all three years, we got it,” she says.

Charrie says today's sentence marks the end of a painful journey, having to hear the details of her daughter's murder repeated over and over.

“We're so thankful this part of the journey is over for us, this has consumed our life for the last three years,” she said, but admits her bitterness towards her daughter's killer will never go away. She says she holds the accused fully responsible and is still frustrated the girl denies making the fatal stab wounds that caused Ashlee to bleed to death at a house party on June 2, 2010. 

“You saw whatever that was yesterday, that fake apology. You can't apologize if you say you didn't do it,” she says.

Yesterday, a letter from the accused's mother was read in court expressing deep sympathy for the Hyatt family. Charrie says it helped to hear the letter and admits for a long time she blamed the mother of the accused.

“But then I thought, you know, both our kids went out that night and one came home, and you don't know what your children are doing,” she says.

Ashlee Hyatt's friend Samantha Waller was one of many of the victim's friends who attended today's sentencing. She says no amount of jail time will ever be enough to compensate for their loss.

“At least she doesn't get to go home to her family, we have to be thankful for that, she has to suffer for a little while,” she says.

Waller says the Youth Criminal Justice Act protects young offenders instead of deterring them from committing crimes.

“Kids know, if you do this, you're protected under the YCJA, your sentence is gonna be small,” she says.

Half of the accused's sentence will consist of a probation period prohibiting the girl from using drugs, alcohol and possessing firearms. It will also require her to attend counselling for anger managment and substance abuse. Justice Barrow explained today that the court is obliged to give the least restrictive sentence possible in order for young offenders to rehabilitate and contribute to society in the future.  

Charrie Hyatt says that's not enough.

“It is not a justice system, it doesn't teach children anything, you take a life and you get three years, it's not a deterrent – not at all,” she says.

Hyatt's friend Waller says despite her frustration with youth sentencing, all of those who have suffered over the last three years have shown a strong character.

“Ashlee would be really proud of how we conducted ourselves,” she says.

 

3:30 p.m. April 17

The girl responsible for stabbing Ashlee Hyatt to death at a house party in Peachland in 2010 will serve a 18-month prison sentence, but only nine months behind bars.

At a sentencing hearing today, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Geoff Barrow sentenced her nine months in jail and nine months under supervision in the community. She will spend another 18 months on probation.

The girl, now 19, was a youth when she stabbed Hyatt to death with a knife after an argument blew out of control. She cannot be named by court order.

Outside court, Hyatt's mother Charrie Hyatt was flanked by dozens of friends and supporters. She shrugged at the sentence, saying while she is pleased the girl who killed her daughter would see time in custody and would be held accountable, she was critical of the system that limited her sentence to three years as a youth.

More to come.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Julie Whittet at jwhittet@infotelnews.ca or call (250)718-0428.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013
InfoTel News Ltd

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