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NSCL Is Canada's Parole System Broken?

On September 4, 2022, a mass stabbing occurred in 13 locations on the James Smith Cree Nation and in Weldon, Saskatchewan, Canada, in which 12 people died and 18 others were injured. It was one of the deadliest massacres in Canadian history.

The RCMP identified Myles-Brandon Sanderson as the perpetrator. Sanderson had a lengthly criminal record for violence, domestic assault and robbery. At the time of the killings, Sanderson was serving a five-year sentence for assault, robbery, mischief, and making threats. However, since he had served more than two thirds of that sentence, he had been granted statutory release with conditions in 2021. However, he violated his parole conditions, leading to a suspension of his release. A warrant had been issued for his arrest, but police had not located him.

Critics of Canada’s parole system are saying that Sanderson’s statutory release led to the tragedy in James Smith Cree Nation and that the parole system allows dangerous offenders to be too easily released from prison.

How does Canada’s parole system work? Is it in need of reform?

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