Toronto

Rengel killer sentenced to life

A 19-year-old Toronto man convicted of murdering teenager Stefanie Rengel has been sentenced as an adult to life in prison with no eligibility for parole for 10 years.
David Bagshaw, shown in a police photograph, was days away from his 18th birthday when he stabbed Stefanie Rengel to death at the urging of his jealous girlfriend. ((Toronto Police Service))
A 19-year-old Toronto man convicted of murdering teenager Stefanie Rengel was sentenced as an adult Monday to life in prison with no eligibility for parole for 10 years.

David Bagshaw pleaded guilty earlier this year to the murder of Rengel, whom he lured outside her Toronto home and stabbed on Jan. 1, 2008, at the behest of his girlfriend.

Bagshaw was four days shy of his 18th birthday when he stabbed Rengel, and throughout his trial could only be referred to by his initials because his identity was protected under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

The decision to sentence him as an adult means his name can now be made public.

In his decision, Ontario Superior Court Justice Ian Nordheimer noted that two psychiatrists who presented pre-sentencing reports believe Bagshaw could be rehabilitated with proper treatment.

"All of those mitigating factors cannot, however, overcome the nature of David's actions — the planned and deliberate killing of a young girl, a young girl who he apparently liked and who liked him," Nordheimer told the court.

"Nor can they blind us to the fact that David still poses a threat to the safety of the public."

Stefanie Rengel was lured outside on New Year's Day in 2008, stabbed repeatedly and left to die. (Courtesy Toronto Police Service)
Bagshaw was pressured into killing Rengel by his jealous girlfriend, Melissa Todorovic.

Todorovic was convicted of first-degree murder in a separate trial. She was sentenced as an adult to life with no chance of parole for seven years, the maximum allowed for someone under 16.

Bagshaw 'understands and accepts' sentence

Nordheimer had described Todorovic as the "puppet master" in the murder, but said while she may have given the orders, it was Bagshaw who carried them out.

Ian Rengel, Stefanie's younger brother, said in a brief statement outside the courtroom that the family was "relieved" to have the trial over but expressed concern that Bagshaw could be free in 10 years.

"My sister Stefanie didn't even get to live 15 years — the community should be concerned when David Bagshaw gets out in 10 years," he said.

Defence lawyer Heather McArthur said Bagshaw "understands the sentence and accepts the sentence" — and feels remorse over his actions.

"All signs have shown that David is rehabilitated — or on his way to being rehabilitated — and the judge spoke to that today," she said.

At a sentencing hearing earlier this month, Bagshaw had said he could not forgive himself for the "disgusting" crime of killing "an innocent girl who deserved to live."

Det. Sgt. Steve Ryan said on Monday he hoped the Rengel family could put this part of the tragedy behind them.

"In my mind I was hoping he was going to get the sentence he was handed," Ryan said. "We got the best outcome we could have possibly received."

With files from The Canadian Press