Cement truck driver who killed 5 granted day parole

A Cochrane man who killed five people in a crash in Calgary in 2007 was granted day parole at his hearing Wednesday.

Daniel Tschetter denied full parole

Truck driver Daniel Tschetter who killed five people in a 2007 crash is granted day parole. 2:08

A Cochrane, Alta., man who killed five people in a crash in Calgary in 2007 was granted day parole at his hearing Wednesday.

But the national parole board says Daniel Tschetter is not ready for full release into the community — and some of the victims family agree.

Herb Grieder is the uncle of 16-month-old Zachary Morrison who was killed in the crash.

"Based on what was said in the hearing, what the parole board panel brought up, the issues they had with him and I agree with their decision that he is not ready to be fully reintroduced back into normal life, I could say," Grieder said.

Tracey Grieder is Morrison's aunt.

"(Daniel Tschetter) doesn't understand right from wrong," she said.  

"He has the choice to make the right choice and he still is making wrong choices even with conditions placed while he's in jail. So I think it's a good thing that he has more time to slowly integrate into society get ready there's a lot of stress for him coming out. And I don't get a sense that he's ready there yet."

Tschetter was driving a cement truck that ran into the back of a car carrying five people— a couple and three children.

He was sentenced to eight years for manslaughter and obstruction of justice.

When the judge factored in time served and other circumstances, Tschetter's actual sentence was set at five and a half years. 

A year ago Tschetter was denied day parole, but was allowed 10 temporary unescorted absences from Bowden Institution, a medium-security facility between the southern Alberta communities of Innisfail and Bowden.  

Tschetter's temporary passes increased from 24 hours to 72 hours throughout the year to visit his family on weekends and for medical appointments.

He has also been attending weekly Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and sees a grief counsellor.

Emotional hearing

Tschetter was emotional, wiping away tears during the hour-long hearing.

"There are no words adequate enough to express the pain and grief and the hell I've caused the victims' families," he said, adding he is a changed man who looks at life differently.

Tschetter is forbidden from operating any vehicle while on parole. Full parole would have let him serve his sentence in the community.

The members said they had concerns that Tschetter operated a bobcat sometime in the past year in spite of the driving ban.

The parole board said they would consider full parole for Tschetter after six months of day parole.