Father of slain 7-year-old Quebec girl gets bail pending his trial – Lethbridge News Now

Father of slain 7-year-old Quebec girl gets bail pending his trial - Lethbridge News Now
Father of 7-year-old girl who died in Granby granted bail
GRANBY — The father of the 7-year-old Granby girl who died on April 30 after being found at home in troubling circumstances was released Thursday, but will have to meet several conditions.

His lawyer presented new evidence in a bid to have him released. Quebec Superior Court Judge Gaétan Dumas agreed to release the accused, but ordered him to remain at a specific place, to abide by a curfew and to report to the police every week.

The young victims death sparked outrage in the community and raised questions about the effectiveness of the provinces youth protection system, triggering a number of probes ordered by the Quebec government.

The man is also prohibited from using alcohol or drugs and possessing firearms. He will not be able to communicate with anyone involved in the case.

The man, 30, is accused of criminal negligence causing death, forcible confinement, failing to provide the necessities of life and child abandonment.

The evidence heard at his bail hearing today was under a publication ban, but at its conclusion a Quebec Superior Court justice agreed the 30-year-old man should be freed pending the outcome of his case.

The girl died in a hospital after being found injured at the family’s home in Granby. Her death triggered a shock wave in Quebec and led to the creation of a special commission tasked with examining the youth protection system in the province.

The man was released on several conditions, and defence lawyer Martin Latour told reporters at the courthouse he was satisfied the presumption of innocence was respected.

A publication ban was ordered, meaning the victim and the accused cannot be named and the matters discussed in court cannot be shared.

Defence lawyer Martin Latour said he was “satisfied that the presumption of innocence prevailed” along with the rule that anyone presumed innocent “has the right to be free.”

Crown attorney Claude Robitaille said he was “disappointed,” but he respects the court’s decision.

The father of the young girl who died in Granby in April was released on bail on Thursday after a ruling by a Quebec Superior Court judge.

Crown prosecutor Claude Robitaille, who had opposed bail for the accused, said he was disappointed but respects the decision of the court.

Justice Gaétan Dumas relied on new facts presented by the defence. That information, however, is subject to a publication ban.

The victims stepmother faces one count of second-degree murder, unlawful confinement and aggravated assault.

The girl's father is charged with criminal negligence causing death, failure to provide the necessities of life, abandonment of a child and forcible confinement.

Lawyers for the father had said they intended to argue that there were legal errors in the decision of the Quebec Court judge who denied bail for the accused.

Martin Latour, a lawyer for the father, said his client felt "relieved" by Dumas's decision.

"I'm satisfied that the presumption of innocence has prevailed and that the rule that the accused should be released while charged with a criminal offence has been respected," Latour said.

"I hope people will understand that this man is presumed innocent and will be tried in a fair and equitable manner."

The girl's father will have to comply with several conditions. He will have to stay at a specific location, will have a curfew and will have to report to police weekly, said the Crown prosecutor, Claude Robitaille.

He will also be prohibited from consuming alcoholic beverages or drugs, will not be able to come into contact with a number of people, including some witnesses, and will not be allowed to possess weapons.

Last week, the father asked to be released during the court proceedings, but due to a delay in handing over documents, the case was not heard. The 30-year-old has been detained since his arrest.

The file of the girl's stepmother, who is accused of second-degree murder, forcible confinement and aggravated assault, will be back on Oct. 28 at the court. She remains in custody.

The identities of the father and stepmother are subject to a publication ban to protect the child's identity.

The seven-year-old girl died in hospital the day after she was found in critical condition at her father's home.

The Quebec government ordered a coroner's inquest into the death of the girl, who had a long history of involvement with the youth protection system.

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