Patrick Storey

Patrick Storey: 'It's not enough to be sorry.' (Elizabeth McMillan/CBC)

The board that granted Roger Warren day parole yesterday says the Giant Mine bomber has done more than show remorse: he’s changed his attitudes and behaviours.

Warren was convicted of murdering nine men at the Giant Mine nearly two decades ago.

Patrick Storey, who speaks for the Parole Board of Canada, says remorse was not enough to allow for Warren’s release.

“It's not enough to be sorry. It's really important that you take a look at yourself, take a look at the issues that led you to commit the offence and show you've done what you need to do to return safely to the community."

At a hearing in Mission, B.C. yesterday, the board agreed that Warren met those conditions.

They say he accepts responsibility for planting the explosives, and has showed that he’s changed in attitudes and behaviours.

“He has participated in all the programs available to him,” Storey says. “He's conformed to the rules of the institution. He's moved from maximum to minimum security prison. He's completed a number of escorted temporary absences and he's developed positive community support. The next step for him is to return to the community and demonstrate he can continue to behave himself.”

Warren told the board he hopes to work and volunteer in Mission, B.C., where he's been serving time.

The conditions of his release include staying away from alcohol and going to counselling to help with the transition back into society.

He's also not allowed to contact victims of the 1992 blast.

If Warren doesn't follow the rules, he will go back to prison.

Warren declined CBC's request for an interview.

Locals react

Warren's parole has dredged up some strong memories for many in Yellowknife. 

Dave Lovell was a Yellowknife city councillor when the bomb went off in 1992 in the midst of a major strike, and he later became mayor.

He says dealing with the aftermath of the explosion was the toughest time of his career.

Lovell says Roger Warren was a good man, but what he did was a very bad thing.

“My thoughts were ‘Geez, it's been 25 years' and then, 'Boy, he's been in jail for 18 years and he's 70, he was 52 when he went in...' That was the sort of thinking of it and it wasn't as personal anymore.”

Lovell says he still doesn't understand why Warren planted the bomb that killed nine miners.

He still thinks those actions were "unnecessary."

He says he's not looking for answers anymore and the strike and the blast are now history.