Stephen Foerster was sentenced to three years in jail after pleading guilty on Wednesday to helping his son Matthew evade police after he murdered Taylor Van Diest on Halloween night three years ago.

Van Diest, 18, went missing in 2011, after leaving home in the early evening to meet a friend. She was found badly beaten by the side of railroad tracks, and died later in hospital.

Matthew Foerster, 28, of Cherryville, was found guilty of her murder in April.

His 60-year-old father Stephen entered a guilty plea to a charge of accessory after the fact, in court on Wednesday morning.

During the trial the court heard how Stephen bought fake identification for his son, who fled to Ontario to avoid capture and get a job.

After the public tipped off the RCMP that Matthew matched the suspect description, police began monitoring Stephen's phone calls to his son, recording him advising Matthew how to evade police.

Foerster was awarded credit for time spent in custody, which reduced the sentence by almost one year.

The victim's mother Marie Van Diest and her family sat through all court proceedings for both men.      

"I think they are both cowards, they are both deviants and neither one of them have a place in society. I am glad Stephen will be out of society for a while, but it makes me shudder to think that he will be released one day soon," she said.       

Matthew Foester convicted in killing

Three years ago, Van Diest had left home at around 6 p.m. to meet a friend.


Matthew Foerster, 28, admitted to causing the injuries that killed Taylor Van Diest.

She had been walking along the tracks, dressed like a zombie for Halloween, and was texting back and forth with her friend.

In the last text her friend received, Van Diest wrote about "being creeped," meaning followed.

Police later identified Matthew Foerster and his father Stephen as suspects.

During Matthew Foerster's murder trial, a forensic pathologist testified that Van Diest died from one or more fatal blows to her head.

Foerster admitted in court, through his lawyer, to causing her injuries, and Crown counsel argued that Foerster caused those wounds while trying to sexually assault her.

His guilty conviction of first-degree murder means he faces life in prison with no eligibility for parole for 25 years.