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Jeffrey Baldwin Inquest
December 6, 2012 permalink
A decade after his death Jeffrey Baldwin will be the subject of a coroner’s inquest. Years of following these carefully controlled ritualized charades allow us to read the result before the process even begins. The jury will recommend more power and more funding for Ontario's children's aid societies. The coroner could do us a service by naming the hundred children per year dying under children's aid watch. That might suggest leaving children with parents as a possible remedy.
Inquest called into death of Jeffrey Baldwin
TORONTO - The grotesque starvation killing of Jeffrey Baldwin by his murderous maternal grandparents will be scrutinized by a coroner’s inquest in the spring, the Toronto Sun has learned.
A starting date of April 8 has been set tentatively for the inquest, which is expected to last three months.
Last year, the province’s highest court ruled that Elva Bottineau and Norman Kidman must spend at least 20 years and likely the rest of their lives in prison for the unimaginably cruel murder of their grandson.
The Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed the couple’s challenge of both their second-degree murder convictions and lengthy parole ineligibility terms.
Bottineau, 60, and Kidman, 59, were convicted of murder in 2006 by Justice David Watt for the Nov. 30, 2002, death of Jeffrey, who was just six weeks shy of his sixth birthday. Watt determined Bottineau must serve 22 years and Kidman 20 years before being eligible for parole.
In his comprehensive, six-hour judgment, Watt aptly summarized the appalling conditions that Jeffrey endured.
“The murder of Jeffrey Baldwin is an offence of indescribable cruelty and incalculable inhumanity,” said Watt.
“They are the antithesis of nurturing grandparents. This was a breach of trust of unfathomable dimensions.”
Bottineau and Kidman kept the boy and his older sister captive for years in a barren, unheated room, with a bare mattress covered in urine and feces, which Watt branded a “dungeon.” Jeffrey was fed from a dog bowl.
Jeffrey was a healthy 15-month-old baby who weighed 22 pounds when seized from his parents and handed over to Kidman and Bottineau by the Catholic Children’s Aid Society in 1998. Four years later, the emaciated child died weighing one pound less.
He died from the ravages of starvation, pneumonia and septic shock.
Bottineau and Kidman, both convicted child abusers from the 1970s, sought and received custody of Jeffrey and his three siblings after the CCAS investigated the children’s parents, Yvonne Kidman and Richard Baldwin, for allegations of abuse. No checks were done on the grandparents.
Background checks and assessments are now made of extended family members seeking custody of children, a CCAS spokesman said in 2006.
At their appeal, lawyers for Jeffrey’s grandparents argued their parole ineligibility periods were excessive when compared to those imposed against the father and stepmother who killed seven-year old Randal Dooley in 1998.
“If that is a case of extraordinary cruelty, where do we find the adjectives to describe this case?” Justice Robert Blair said during the proceedings.
Source: Toronto Sun