Allan Schoenborn, the British Columbia father who killed his three children, will not be transferred to a psychiatric hospital in Manitoba, as he'd requested, the B.C. criminal justice branch announced Monday.

Schoenborn asked for the move at a review board hearing in February, saying his mother and other family members could visit him in the Selkirk Mental Health Centre facility near Winnipeg.

The review board panel had recommended the transfer but the responsible B.C. justice official declined consent.

"The ADAG [assistant deputy attorney general] is satisfied that at this time, protection of the public weighs in favour of Schoenborn remaining under the supervision and treatment of Forensic Psychiatric Services in B.C.," the branch said in a statement.

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The Schoenborn children, Kaitlynne, 10, Max, 8, and Cordon, 5, were found slain in their mobile home in Merritt, B.C. (CBC)

 

Schoenborn was found not criminally responsible by reason of mental disorder for the April 2008 slayings of 10-year-old Kaitlynne, eight-year-old Max and five-year-old Cordon in their Merritt, B.C., home.

He stabbed his daughter and smothered his sons before fleeing, only to be found a week later dehydrated in the woods not far from the crime scene.

He will remain at the Forensic Psychiatric Hospital in Port Coquitlam, B.C. No request for the transfer was made to justice officials in Manitoba.

Children's mother opposed move

No one from the B.C. Review Board was immediately able to comment on the decision, but the statement issued Monday noted the considerable public attention the case has received.

Family members said following the review board hearing in February that Darcie Clarke, Schoenborn's ex-wife and mother of the murdered children, opposed the move.

Clarke's brother, Mike, said they had family members who live near the Manitoba facility. The family also expressed a need to continue attending review board hearings.

During erratic testimony at his trial, Schoenborn, 40 at the time of slayings, said he killed the children to protect them from what was later described as an imagined threat of sexual abuse.

The Crown claimed the murders were revenge on Clarke for leaving her husband.

Legal reforms

The case sparked outrage, and anger was renewed when just 14 months after he was found not criminally responsible, the B.C. review board granted Schoenborn the possibility of supervised day trips into the community.

Two weeks later, amid a public outcry and after learning that Clarke lived in the city where Schoenborn is being incarcerated, the board held another hearing at which Schoenborn unexpectedly withdrew his request for escorted leave.

In the interim, he suffered a severe beating by another patient at the facility.

Schoenborn has been the focal point of a federal government effort to change laws affecting mentally ill offenders.

Clarke's cousin stood beside Prime Minister Stephen Harper when he announced legislation earlier this year that created a "high-risk" designation for not criminally responsible offenders.

That legislation does not apply to Schoenborn, however, and he is expected to appear before another review board panel for his annual hearing before the end of February 2014.