Manitoba

Christine Wood's killer gets life with no chance of parole for 15 years

A Winnipeg man who stabbed an Indigenous woman almost a dozen times and then buried her body in a shallow grave has been sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 15 years.

Brett Overby admitted to killing but said he didn't remember what happened

Christine Wood's body was found in a ditch outside the city in June 2017.

A Winnipeg man who stabbed an Indigenous woman almost a dozen times and then buried her body in a shallow grave has been sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 15 years.

Brett Ronald Overby, 32, was found guilty in May of second-degree murder for killing Christine Wood. 

The 21-year-old was from the Bunibonibee Cree Nation, also known as Oxford House, about 580 kilometres north of Winnipeg.

Wood was in Winnipeg with her parents in August 2016 when she disappeared from the hotel where they were staying.

Her body was found 10 months later, buried in a farmer's field, outside Winnipeg.

During his trial, Overby admitted to killing Wood in the basement of his home, but said he didn't remember what happened.

Brett Overby was found guilty in May of second-degree murder in the death of 21-year-old Christine Wood. (Instagram)

She was stabbed 11 times, her throat was slit and her skull and leg were broken.

Traces of blood and evidence of a cleanup were found all over Overby's basement.

Wood's parents wrote a victim impact statement, which was read out by the Crown attorney, during Overby's sentencing hearing. The family said Wood didn't deserve to be left in a shallow grave like garbage.

Her father, George Wood, spoke to reporters at a press conference in Winnipeg on Tuesday after the sentencing.

Melinda and George Wood speak with media on Tuesday following the sentencing of the man convicted of killing their daughter Christine Wood. (Walther Bernal/CBC)

"We are pleased to see our daughter's killer brought to justice today," he said.

"It's not going to bring our daughter back, it's not going to take away the pain. It'll always be there."

He also spoke of his daughter's love of eduction, fashion and the Cree language. While he thanked police and the courts for how they handled the case, he expressed disappointment in the lack of resources and inappropriate questions asked about his daughter's character shortly after she went missing.

"I know there's been talk about closure. To me, there will never be closure. There will always be a missing piece in my heart," he said.

Bunibonibee Chief Tim Muskego supported the parents at the press conference.

"As the chief of my community I will continue to push for the all leadership to work together to create safer spaces for Indigenous women and girls," said Muskego. 

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About the Author

Kelly Geraldine Malone

The Canadian Press

Kelly Geraldine Malone is a reporter for The Canadian Press.