sk-stobbe-mark(2)080624

Mark Stobbe was released on bail and will be back in court Sept. 11. ((CBC))

Mark Stobbe, charged last month in the death of his wife Beverley Rowbotham eight years ago, will be released on $50,000 bail following a court hearing Tuesday in Winnipeg.

Stobbe, a one-time top adviser to former Saskatchewan premier Roy Romanow, was arrested May 27 in Saskatoon and charged with second-degree murder in connection with his wife's death in in October 2000.

Stobbe has always maintained he didn't kill his wife.

He will have to meet strict bail conditions, including:

  • Reporting to RCMP weekly in Saskatoon.
  • Not changing his address in Saskatoon.
  • Staying in Saskatchewan except for required court appearances in Winnipeg or to meet with his lawyer. 

He will also be allowed to attend baseball games in which his sons are participating.

B.C. Crown attorney Garth Loeppky, who was brought as a prosecutor, declined to comment on the case against Stobbe, who has yet to enter a plea.

Stobbe's next court date is scheduled for Sept. 11.

Maintains innocence

The body of Rowbotham, 42, was found in her car at a gas station near Selkirk in October 2000. Investigators said they believed she had been beaten to death in the backyard of her home in nearby St. Andrews, then moved to Selkirk.

At the time, Stobbe told investigators Rowbotham had left the family home around 8:30 p.m. the day before her body was found to go grocery shopping. He had fallen asleep with their two sons, then five and three years old, he said, and called police at 1:30 a.m., when she hadn't returned home.

Rowbotham, Stobbe and their sons moved to Manitoba from Regina about five months before Rowbotham's death, after Stobbe accepted a senior job on the Manitoba cabinet's community and economic development committee.

Rowbotham worked for several years with the Saskatchewan Public Service Commission before moving to Manitoba.

After Rowbotham's death, Stobbe moved back to Saskatchewan. He was living in Saskatoon with the couple's sons, now 11 and 13, at the time of his arrest.