Nova Scotia

N.S. child killer granted temporary passes from prison

A Nova Scotia woman who murdered her daughter is being allowed out of prison to attend church and socialize with a friend. The Parole Board of Canada granted the temporary, escorted passes to Penny Boudreau at a November hearing.

Parole Board of Canada granted passes to Penny Boudreau, who killed her daughter in 2008

Penny Boudreau is escorted from provincial court in Bridgewater, N.S., in 2009 after pleading guilty to second-degree murder in the death of her daughter, Karissa. (Andrew Vaughan/Canadian Press)

A Nova Scotia woman who murdered her daughter is being allowed out of prison to attend church and to visit a friend.

The Parole Board of Canada granted the temporary, escorted passes to Penny Boudreau at a hearing in November.

Boudreau choked her 12-year-old daughter, Karissa, to death in 2008. She initially claimed the child was missing, but confessed to her crime in January 2009.

She pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and must serve 20 years of her life sentence before she can begin applying for parole.

The temporary passes are to assist Boudreau in her eventual reintegration into society.

This is not the first time the parole board has allowed Boudreau out of prison.

Karissa Boudreau was 12 when her mother strangled her to death on Jan. 27, 2008, and left her body on a riverbank outside of Bridgewater, N.S.

In 2018, she was granted four passes to attend church. Since those absences went without incident, the board granted additional passes the following year.

Boudreau was not able to complete all of the approved trips because of media attention and complications caused by the pandemic.

In both prior instances, Boudreau was escorted and the trips were only to attend church.

This time, the board has approved an additional visit to a family friend. The church visits would be three hours each, including travel time. The visit to the friend's home would be for six hours, including travel time to and from prison.

"Local police have expressed their opposition to the proposed ETA (Escorted Temporary Absence) to your friend's residence citing the dynamics of your crime, the need for deterrence and the negative impact your offence [had] on the community," the board noted in its decision.

However, the board said the visit would be beneficial.

"The ETA for family contact to a close personal friend who remains supportive of you will allow you to further develop close bonds in a familial setting and again further the effective management of your risk factors."

The board said Boudreau has been assessed as a low or very low risk to reoffend violently when she's compared to other offenders. She is classified as a low security risk in prison.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Blair Rhodes

Reporter

Blair Rhodes has been a journalist for more than 40 years, the last 31 with CBC. His primary focus is on stories of crime and public safety. He can be reached at blair.rhodes@cbc.ca

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