British Columbia

B.C. father who killed 3 kids gets escorted leave

The B.C. father found not criminally responsible for killing his three children has been granted escorted leave from the psychiatric hospital where he is confined.

Schoenborn case

The National

10 years ago
2:25
Allan Schoenborn, who killed his daughter and two sons three years ago, is being released from a psychiatric hospital to much public outcry 2:25

The B.C. father found not criminally responsible for killing his three children has been granted escorted leave from the psychiatric hospital where he is confined.

The B.C. Review Board will allow Allan Schoenborn to take supervised day trips into the community, as the 42-year-old requested at a review hearing Tuesday.

Schoenborn was found not criminally responsible  last winter in the killing of his children — aged five, eight and 10 — exactly three years ago today in Merritt, B.C.

He has since been diagnosed with delusional disorder and has been receiving treatment at a psychiatric hospital where he has been confined since his trial.

"It's a long road from here to there, to have no more custody," Schoenborn said at his review hearing Tuesday. "Baby steps. I can't jump too far — as I learned last year — too fast."

Schoenborn requested at his first review hearing last year to be discharged completely from the hospital, but was denied on the grounds he was still a threat to society.

He said this time around that he wants to keep taking his medication and remain at the hospital.

"I'm looking for the answers to what happened, and I don't want anything to gum up the works," he said.

Anger issues unresolved

Hospital director Dr. Johann Brink supported Schoenborn's request for supervised visits, but said the man still has anger issues to resolve. Although the board has granted Schoenborn's general request, it will be at Brink's discretion to approve leave from the hospital.

Crown lawyer Lyle Hillaby supported the supervised visits, but issued a warning to the review board.

"He is not to be trusted," Hillaby said of Schoenborn. "He had a terrible history with violence and anger."

Scott Hicks, Schoenborn's lawyer, told the review board that his client had committed no violent act over the past year and his disorder was in remission, so it was "realistic" to grant him community visits at Brink's discretion.

In their decision, the review board said Schoenborn may have escorted access to the community, but must not use alcohol or drugs, possess a weapon or contact his ex-wife.

Trapper questions release

Meanwhile the Merritt hunter who captured Schoenborn  while he was hiding out after the killings says he's outraged Schoenborn is eligible to apply for escorted parole so soon.

Kim Robinson says he believes Schoeborn is a manipulator and psychiatrists appear to be falling for his act.

"I read him in the paper there yesterday that he wants to go to the mall and have a coffee.  What about that pretty little girl that will never have any children?  What about those boys who will never play baseball or go fishing or do something?" said Robinson.

"But he wants to go out and have a coffee and act like nothing's happened.  Yeah, my feeling is that of disgust," he said.

now