Fingers poined over deportation of child-killing mom

EDMONTON — Alberta and federal officials are pointing fingers at each other over the deportation of an Australian woman who drowned her two children.

EDMONTON — Alberta and federal officials are pointing fingers at each other over the deportation of an Australian woman who drowned her two children.

On Monday, provincial Justice Minister Jonathan Denis disputed remarks from federal Public Safety Minister Vic Toews that Alberta dropped the ball when it came to keeping Allyson McConnell in Canada pending appeals of her conviction and sentence for killing her children in 2010.

McConnell, 34, was convicted of manslaughter and set to be deported Monday after earning early release.

Toews said last Friday that the province had just informed Ottawa of the case and there wasn’t enough time to take steps to keep McConnell in Canada until the appeals are heard.

Denis disputed that.

“We have been in contact with the federal government. I’m not quite sure what (Toews) is talking about,” said Denis.

“On our end, our prosecution service has done absolutely everything according to the book, and I stand by their actions.”

Denis, however, refused to say what the two levels of government discussed about McConnell’s case or when.

“I’m not privy to talk about private conversations,” said Denis.

“Even time frames?” a reporter asked.

“I’m not privy to talk about private conversations,” he reiterated.

Denis said regardless of the deportation, the pursuit of the appeals continues.

“We’re in the process of contacting the Australian foreign office to advise that she is a person of interest,” said Denis.

“This is not over. We will continue with the appeal until all avenues have been exhausted. If the sentence of six years is increased to something more reasonable, we have full intentions of having her brought back from Australia to pay her debt to society.”

McConnell was going through a bitter divorce and child custody battle with her husband, Curtis, when the two children were killed on Feb. 1, 2010.

Curtis McConnell arrived at the couple’s home in Millet, south of Edmonton, that day to find his sons Connor, aged two, and Jayden, 10 months, drowned in the bathtub.

After drowning the boys, court heard at trial that Allyson McConnell drove to a highway overpass in Edmonton and jumped off, seriously injuring herself.

She was found guilty of manslaughter and ordered to spend six years in jail. McConnell had to serve 15 months in a psychiatric hospital after taking into account time served before trial.

She was released last week after serving 10 months, setting up the deportation proceedings to Australia.

Her deportation has outraged Curtis McConnell and his family.

On Friday, Toews lamented that little could be done to stop her from leaving. In a written statement, Toews said: “It is unfortunate that the Alberta government did not act prior to Ms. McConnell’s release in order to prevent this situation from occurring.”

Toews said the province could have applied to expedite McConnell’s appeal prior to sentence being completed or applied to the court to stay her removal pending appeal.

“As Ms. McConnell is the subject of a valid removal order and would otherwise be free of any sentence or restriction in Canada, (Canada Border Services Agency) will be required by law to proceed with the presently scheduled removal on Monday evening,” he said.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A rodeo south of Bowden drew a huge crowd on May 1 and 2, 2021. (Photo courtesy Mom’s Diner’s Facebook page)
Bowden’s reputation bounces back

RCMP investigate pop-up freedom rally in Red Deer

The City of Red Deer says it has not implemented a curfew and will continue to explore options and do what is necessary based on provincial direction. (Advocate file photo).
COVID curfew not on Red Deer city council’s agenda

Red Deer creeping up to 1,000 COVID-19 cases

Red Deerians deserve a strong partner in the province, and a strong plan for the future says Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)
‘UCP has taken Red Deer for granted,’ says Notley

Geothermal energy drilling will expand in central Alberta if the NDP is… Continue reading

Kris Sturgess with Calgary Ghostbusters. (Photo from GoFundMe)
GoFundMe account salutes Red Deer prop builder

Kris Sturgess died unexpectedly April 28

FILE - A firefighter wears a mask as he drives his truck. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward, File
VIDEO: Flames rip through Edmonton-area seniors complex, but no fatalities

ST. ALBERT, Alta. — Fire has destroyed part of a retirement complex… Continue reading

Rona Ambrose is shown during an interview with The Canadian Press in Ottawa, Thursday, May 18, 2017. New judges will have to commit to take training in sexual assault law, thanks to a new law that received royal assent last night. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Judges’ sexual assault training bill receives royal assent after clearing the Senate

OTTAWA, Ohio — New judges will have to commit to take training… Continue reading

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau walks to a news conference in Ottawa on Tuesday May 4, 2021. A broad coalition of MPs from all five parties wants the federal government to support waiving the global rules that guard vaccine trade secrets. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
As MPs urge support, Trudeau demurs on whether government backs COVID-19 waiver

WASHINGTON — Justin Trudeau stopped well short Friday of endorsing efforts to… Continue reading

Workers perform ground preparations outside City Hall in Yellowknife on Monday, July 4, 2011. A recent outbreak of COVID-19 cases in Yellowknife is mostly affecting children and youth, the territory’s chief public health officer says. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Most of Yellowknife’s COVID-19 cases are in children and youth: public health officer

YELLOWKNIFE — A health official in the Northwest Territories says a recent… Continue reading

Statistics Canada building and signs are pictured in Ottawa on Wednesday, July 3, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
A year after jobs data leak, StatCan resumes sharing advance numbers with officials

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada has resumed its practice of giving key federal… Continue reading

jobs - T - 3-6-2020
Job search: 10 ways to make your LinkedIn profile stand out in 2021

In 2021 successful job hunting requires having a LinkedIn profile that’s current… Continue reading

Max Parrot of Canada competes in the men’s snowboard big air final at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. Parrot has won the Comeback of the Year honour at the Laureus World Sports Awards. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canadian snowboarder Max Parrot wins Laureus World Sports Award for comeback

Parrot beat out former Washington Football Team quarterback Alex Smith

Most Read