Paroled Calgary child killer allowed out on his own from Regina facility

Convicted child killer Harold David Smeltzer of Calgary has been granted another six months of day parole in Regina — with new conditions designed to keep him away from where children gather.
Harold David Smeltzer has been living in a Regina halfway house since November 2008. ((Regina police service))
Convicted child killer Harold David Smeltzer of Calgary has been granted another six months of day parole in Regina — with new conditions designed to keep him away from where children gather.

However, the latest National Parole Board decision on Smeltzer also allows him to have unescorted absences from the halfway house he lives in.

The board's written decision, released to the media on Wednesday, followed a parole board hearing on Monday.

"You have now been given expanded access to the community and are allow to leave the facility without escort," the board said in a four-page decision.

Since day parole was granted last fall, Smeltzer has been under a list of restrictions, including taking psychological counselling.

Smeltzer, 53, has been allowed out for such things as medical appointments and going to the bank.

In each case, he was required to be accompanied by a parole officer and another corrections official.

Now, that requirement has been lifted.

There's also a new condition being imposed on his release: he is now banned from places where children are likely to congregate, such as parks, community centres and playgrounds.

Under a previously imposed condition, he must stay away from children under 18 unless accompanied by an adult under the supervision of a parole officer.

And he must continue to take psychological counselling to help him deal with his own childhood sexual abuse and to help him become integrated into the community.

He can leave his residence during the day, but must return at night.

According to the parole board, he has been diagnosed as a pedophile with an anti-social personality disorder.

Kimberley Thompson was grabbed off the street while on her way to kindergarten in 1980. Harold David Smeltzer received a life sentence for her murder.
Smeltzer has admitted to raping 40 young girls and killing a five-year-old girl, Kimberley Thompson, in Calgary in 1980.

Thompson was grabbed off the street while walking to kindergarten. Smeltzer was intending to sexually assault the girl, but when she recognized him, he drowned her, according to parole board documents. He began serving a life sentence for the murder in 1981.

In its decision this week, the board said it's fully aware of the gravity and brutality of Smeltzer's offences, but decades have passed and the risk to the community of having Smeltzer remain on day parole is "manageable."

The decision acknowledged to Smeltzer that he has "completed all required programming, continues to be engaged in all interventions aimed at your maintenance and have posed no concerns since your release on day parole."

Before being granted day parole last November, Smeltzer had been serving time at Prince Albert's Riverbend Institution, a minimum security prison. Since 2005, he had been on 137 unescorted temporary absences to work and receive counselling.