CALGARY – A young woman convicted of murdering her Medicine Hat family when she was just 12-years-old must continue to obey a court-ordered curfew on weekdays.
The girl, known only as “J.R.,” returned to court on Tuesday to undergo a sentencing review hearing.
Now 21-years-old, JR has been serving a ten-year sentence since being convicted of murdering her mother, father and young brother in 2006 with her then-boyfriend Jeremy Steinke.
Her last review was in September, when the judge allowed her to stay out past her 11:30 p.m. curfew on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
At the time, both the Crown and defence had requested her curfew be lifted completely, saying it’s an impediment to her bonding with friends and forming relationships she will need once she has completed her sentence. However, the judge felt they should still take “baby steps” as they increase JR’s freedom.
On Tuesday, her lawyer again applied to have the curfew removed entirely, saying JR will be finished her sentence in May of 2016, just 15 months from now.
Despite this, caseworkers who appeared with JR via CCTV told Justice Scott Brooker that JR is moving to more independent living in April or May of this year, and they felt the current curfew should remain in place to help her through that transition.
Brooker noted that reports on JR completed since her last review are glowing, and suggest she has been – and continues to be – significantly remorseful.
The judge said the court will continue to take “baby steps” for the time being.
The next review will be held on August 20, at which time the curfew matter will likely be addressed once more.
JR will transition to complete freedom in May 2016.
She cannot be named under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.
– With files from David Boushy