Edward Downey. (Handout via The Canadian Press)

Killer of Calgary mother, daughter gets no parole for 50 years

A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year in the deaths of Sara Baillie, 34, and five-year-old Taliyah Marsman

A man convicted of killing a Calgary mother and her young daughter will have to wait 50 years before he has a chance at parole.

A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year of first-degree murder in the 2016 deaths of Sara Baillie, who was 34, and five-year-old Taliyah Marsman.

The convictions carry an automatic life sentence with no chance of parole for 25 years, but Justice Beth Hughes ruled Tuesday that Downey must wait 50 years before he can ask the parole board for release.

“The gravity of the offence, Mr. Downey’s moral blameworthiness, and his degree of responsibility are at the highest level,” the judge said, noting Downey planned and deliberated on the girl’s murder for hours before he killed her.

Downey showed no emotion as Hughes read her decision. An uncle and cousin of Baillie embraced in the courtroom.

The Crown had argued Downey’s record of escalating crimes since his early 20s and the brutality of the murders warranted consecutive periods of parole ineligibilities — a provision allowed when someone is convicted of multiple murders.

Downey’s lawyers, however, argued that would be tantamount to a death sentence because their 49-year-old client would have no hope of release until his mid-90s.

The trial heard Downey killed Baillie because he blamed her for the breakdown of his relationship with his girlfriend, who was Baillie’s best friend, and that Baillie had dissuaded the woman from working for Downey as an escort.

Jurors heard Taliyah was a witness who needed to be silenced.

Both died by asphyxiation.

The trial heard graphic evidence of how Baillie was found dead in a laundry basket in her daughter’s bedroom with duct tape wrapped around her face, neck and wrists. And her daughter was gone.

Three days later, the girl was found dead in some bushes in a rural area east of the city.

Downey repeatedly denied the killings in his testimony and suggested someone named Terrance was to blame.

He apologized at his sentencing hearing in March to Baillie and Taliyah’s friends and family, but did not admit to killing them.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Ponoka County dealing with extraordinary rise in outstanding taxes

Nearly $4 million in property taxes, penalties remain unpaid

Justice Minister discusses rural crime in Lacombe

Minister Doug Schweitzer: “Our democracy is founded on public safety”

Testing winter feed

Testing winter feed lets producers know what nutrients are available

VIDEO: Trudeau asks Canada to look to current, not past, actions on race

Liberal leader says he never spoke about the racist photo because he was embarrassed

Trudeau seeks meeting with Singh to apologize for blackface, brownface photos

‘I will be apologizing to him personally as a racialized Canadian,’ Trudeau said Friday

Charges stayed against Alberta RCMP officer in alleged off-duty Whistler assault

Const. Vernon Hagen instead completed an alternative measures program

‘Unacceptable’: What politicians have to say about Trudeau in blackface

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi: ‘When I saw that picture last night, certainly it was a sucker-punch’

Judge finds Alberta couple not guilty in toddler son’s death

It was the second trial for the Stephans, who were found guilty by a jury in 2016

Alberta couple charged in toddler son’s death to learn fate from judge

David and Collet Stephan are charged with failing to provide the necessaries of life

Alberta government pitching that small rural areas pay for policing: NDP

Those 291 districts represent about 20 per cent of the Alberta population

Alberta inquiry into oil and gas foes could face legal challenge from Ecojustice

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has repeatedly accused U.S. charities of bankrolling efforts

Yearbook photo surfaces of Trudeau wearing ‘brownface’ costume in 2001

The report describes the occasion as an ‘Arabian Nights’-themed gala event

Most Read