Montreal

Father of 7-year-old girl who died in Granby granted bail

Lawyers for the father had said they intended to argue that there were legal errors in the decision of the Quebec Court judge who denied bail for the accused.

Quebec Superior Court judge relied on new facts presented by defence

Hundreds paid their respects at the funeral for a seven-year-old girl who died in hospital in April after she was found in critical condition by police in Granby. The service was held at the Saint-Eugène Church in Granby, Que. (Ivanoh Demers/Radio-Canada)

The father of the young girl who died in Granby in April was released on bail on Thursday after a ruling by a Quebec Superior Court judge.

Justice Gaétan Dumas relied on new facts presented by the defence. That information, however, is subject to a publication ban.

The girl's father is charged with criminal negligence causing death, failure to provide the necessities of life, abandonment of a child and forcible confinement.

Lawyers for the father had said they intended to argue that there were legal errors in the decision of the Quebec Court judge who denied bail for the accused.

Martin Latour, a lawyer for the father, said his client felt "relieved" by Dumas's decision.

"I'm satisfied that the presumption of innocence has prevailed and that the rule that the accused should be released while charged with a criminal offence has been respected," Latour said.

"I hope people will understand that this man is presumed innocent and will be tried in a fair and equitable manner."

The girl's father will have to comply with several conditions. He will have to stay at a specific location, will have a curfew and will have to report to police weekly, said the Crown prosecutor, Claude Robitaille.

He will also be prohibited from consuming alcoholic beverages or drugs, will not be able to come into contact with a number of people, including some witnesses, and will not be allowed to possess weapons.

Last week, the father asked to be released during the court proceedings, but due to a delay in handing over documents, the case was not heard. The 30-year-old has been detained since his arrest.

The file of the girl's stepmother, who is accused of second-degree murder, forcible confinement and aggravated assault, will be back on Oct. 28 at the court. She remains in custody.

The identities of the father and stepmother are subject to a publication ban to protect the child's identity.

The seven-year-old girl died in hospital the day after she was found in critical condition at her father's home.

The Quebec government ordered a coroner's inquest into the death of the girl, who had a long history of involvement with the youth protection system.

Based on a report by Radio-Canada

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