Quebec City man sentenced to life with no parole for 25 years for 1st-degree murder of sex worker

Eustachio Gallese, 51, pleaded guilty to the first-degree murder of Marylène Levesque, 22, whose body was found in a hotel room in the Quebec City borough of Sainte-Foy Jan. 22.

Eustachio Gallese admitted to killing Marylène Levesque, 22, in Sainte-Foy hotel room last month

Eustachio Gallese, 51, has pleaded guilty in the death of 22-year-old Marylène Levesque. (Radio-Canada)

Eustachio Gallese, 51, has been sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years for the stabbing death of Marylène Levesque, whose body was found in a hotel room in the Quebec City borough of Sainte-Foy Jan. 22.

Gallese pleaded guilty to first-degree murder when he appeared at the Quebec City courthouse Thursday morning.

He was initially charged with second-degree murder, but on Feb. 24, his charges were upgraded. 

Levesque, 22, was a sex worker in a massage parlour and had met Gallese at hotels on multiple occasions.

The Crown prosecutor told the court Gallese had developed feelings for Levesque and grew jealous and angry when she became more distant. She agreed to meet him at a restaurant on Jan. 22, then went with him to a hotel.

Gallese admitted to planning the murder in advance, concealing a knife and stabbing the victim in the abdomen 30 times.

The Crown said Gallese had planned to take his own life after killing Levesque but instead turned himself in to police.

Gallese was sentenced in 2006 to life in prison with no chance of parole for 15 years for the 2004 second-degree murder of his ex-wife, Chantale Deschênes. According to parole documents, he struck her on the head with a hammer and stabbed her several times, enraged by her decision to leave him. 

After serving 15 years, he was granted day parole last March, and he had been living in a halfway house at the time of Levesque's death.

Marylène Levesque, 22, who had been working at an erotic massage parlour, was found dead in a hotel room in the Quebec City suburb of Sainte-Foy on Jan. 22. (Marylène Levesque/Facebook)

The Parole Board of Canada denied Gallese full parole last September, however, it extended his day parole with several conditions, listing his likelihood of reoffending as "low to moderate."

Gallese had a special arrangement with his case worker which allowed him to have relations with women to meet his "sexual needs." As part of the conditions of his day parole, he was required to disclose any relations he had with women to his parole officer.

The public outcry over that arrangement following Levesque's death, led provincial politicians and federal opposition MPs to demand an investigation into the parole board's decision.

Public Safety Minister Bill Blair announced in late January that the Correctional Service of Canada and the parole board would conduct a joint investigation "into all of the circumstances that led to the tragic death of Marylène Levesque."

with files from Radio-Canada's Pierre-Alexandre Bolduc