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Alberta Kafka Appeal

July 1, 2009 permalink

It's official. There is an appeal in the Alberta Kafka case.



Edmonton foster mom appeals manslaughter conviction

By Ryan Cormier, edmontonjournal.comJune 30, 2009

Alberta Kafka
Courtroom sketch from the trial of the foster mother.
Photograph by: Amanda O'Connell, Edmonton Journal

EDMONTON — A foster mother sentenced to three years for the death of a child in her care is appealing her conviction and asking for a new trial.

On June 5, the 32-year-old nurse was convicted of manslaughter in the death of a three-year-old boy living in her home.

After 52 days of foster family experience, the woman and child were alone in a bathroom when he suffered a blow to the head and lost consciousness. The trauma and swelling were so severe that immediate medical treatment would not have saved him, court heard.

The foster mother testified that the boy had woken up in the middle of the night and needed to use the bathroom. The squirming boy leaped from her arms and struck his head on the toilet bowl, she testified.

While Crown prosecutors argued that it was murder, the woman’s defence maintained it was an accident.

The Crown had asked for a sentence of 10 to 12 years, while the defence argued for one to three.

Defence lawyer Brian Beresh said the sentence was fair, but called the jury’s decision to convict a “compromised verdict.”

The foster mother, who is currently being held at a Saskatchewan healing lodge, is arguing that two witnesses were allowed to testify outside their expertise and that the Crown should not have been allowed to introduce prior acts as evidence.

Defence lawyer Peter Royal is handling the appeal.

Neither the foster mother nor the deceased child can be identified.

Source: Edmonton Journal