January 11, 2017 5:08 pm
Updated: January 11, 2017 8:11 pm

Convicted Calgary killer Deborah Point granted escorted visit

WATCH ABOVE: Convicted killer Deborah Point has been granted her first taste of freedom in nearly two decades. Point murdered and dismembered a Calgary woman in 1999 and now the parole board has granted her a pass to tackle a gambling addiction. Kendra Slugoski reports.

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Deborah Point, the Calgary woman serving life in prison for the gruesome killing and dismembering of her roommate, was granted one Escorted Temporary Absence (ETA) pass Wednesday.

The single pass, granted by the Parole Board, will allow Point to attend a Gamblers Anonymous meeting.

READ MORE: Woman convicted in gruesome murder requesting early release

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Point is serving a life sentence for second-degree murder with no chance of parole for 20 years in the killing of her roommate Audrey Trudeau.

Trudeau disappeared in February 1999. Five months later, her dismembered body was found in cardboard boxes inside a southwest Calgary garage.

She had been stabbed 15 times in the back of her head. Point was arrested two days later.

READ MORE: Convicted Calgary killer Deborah Point denied faint hope 

Trudeau’s family attended Wednesday’s hearing.

“Audrey needs representation. She needs a voice. She no longer has one,” her sister Sheila Chiappetta said. “So, no matter how hard this always will be, one of us will always be here, at least.”

It was the first time Chiappetta had seen Point since the murder trial.

“It brought a whole range of emotions.”

Audrey Trudeau, 1999, Point’s roommate.

Obtained by Global News

Trudeau’s family worries this one escorted pass will open the door for more.

“She can apply for more ETAs,” Chiappetta said. “We are informed [but are] no longer part of the [hearing] process.”

“Today they granted her one leave, that was the board,” Angela Wiggins, Trudeau’s niece said.

The Parole Board told Global News now that one escorted pass has been authorized for Point, Corrections now has the power to authorize other escorted passes without a hearing, as long as the first ETA is successful.

The board said there could still be hearings if Point doesn’t follow protocol.

“She’s going to get or attempt to get the one thing that we’ll never have again. She wants to be a part of her family and have that social interaction with them… and she’s removed that portion of it from our lives.”

“That’s not justice,” Wiggins said. “How is that justice?”

The family says Point has not taken responsibility for Trudeau’s death.

“She’s never admitted guilt,” Chiappetta said. “Even today, she still says she never did it.”

Chiappetta and Wiggins live in Ontario but came to Edmonton for the parole hearing.

The National Parole Board previously denied Point escorted temporary absences.

“Today she filled in all the blanks and jumped through all the hoops,” Wiggins said. “She came at it from a new angle as well. This time around, she met the criteria that was required to get what she wanted. So, despite any misgivings they had about her lack of accountability for the Index Crime, they call it, they had to give it to her. There was no way out for them.”

“I just know, just by watching her and listening today and taking my emotions out of it and going: ‘Oh you’re playing the system good aren’t you?'” Chiappetta said. “You get to play the system. My sister’s dead.”

Point is eligible to apply for full parole on July 22, 2019.

With files from Nancy Hixt, Global News

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