Parole granted again after Kamloops murderer breaches | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Parole granted again after Kamloops murderer breaches

Image Credit: FILE PHOTO

A convicted murderer is out on parole again after he broke his conditions last year.

Brian Townsend, 73, failed to report a relationship to his parole officer, so the Parole Board of Canada suspended his parole in September 2022.

He's allowed to return to a "residential facility" after a Jan. 12 parole board decision.

Townsend was convicted of second degree murder in 2009, nine years after he beat 15-year-old Vivien Morzuch with a bat and dumped his body near Savona.

Morzuch had left his home in Quebec to pick fruit in the Okanagan and the investigation went cold for at least five years.

READ MORE: Podcast sheds light on Kamloops child-murder solved six years after case went cold

According to the parole board decision, police uncovered fingerprints on duct tape from the scene after reviewing the evidence in 2005.

Townsend subsequently confessed to killing Morzuch to undercover officers on two separate occasions before he was eventually convicted by a jury in 2009.

His criminal history includes prior drug convictions and a 2005 robbery while on probation. He's now deemed a low to moderate risk to reoffend, according to the parole decision.

Although he was granted full parole again, Townsend will have to abide by "special conditions," including to reside at a facility approved by his parole officer.

He also must report any relationships to his parole officer, whether it's a romantic relationship or a friend. He can't have any contact with the Morzuch's family, and he can't use drugs or alcohol.

Townsend plans to also appeal his murder conviction in the future, aiming to overturn it to a manslaughter charge.

He takes issue with police undercover tactics that were used, commonly called a "Mr. Big" sting where the undercover officer coaxes a confession from the suspect.

If successfully overturned, his conditions would be dropped at the end of his sentence, according to the decision.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Levi Landry or call 250-819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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