Former convicted of second-degree murder was awaiting Supreme Court appeal

The Saskatchewan Justice Department has granted Robert Latimer the right to a new trial.

Latimer has been confined to his farm near Wilkie, Saskatchewan since the upholding of his July conviction of a second degree murder in the death of his daughter, Tracy, aged 12, in October of 1993.

Latimer was sentenced to life in prison with no parole for 10 years after killing Tracy because she “lived with cerebral palsy.  His conviction was partially based on his confession that he killed his daughter because he wanted to end her suffering.  He admitted to piping carbon monoxide fumes into the cab or his truck where he placed Tracy until she died.

Latimer is appealing to the Supreme Court of Canada to hear an appeal of his conviction on the basis that his confession is inadmissible because the police breached his rights by not informing him that he was under arrest or that he could remain silent when they first interviewed him regarding Tracy’s death.  If the Supreme Court agrees to hear his appeal and rules in his favour they may acquit him of all charges.  If they refuse to hear his appeal, or if they rule against him, he can request a new trial based on the new evidence which has recently surfaced and which has led to the decision by the Saskatchewan

Justice Department.

The Saskatchewan Justice Department found that police had secretly questioned members of the Latimer jury on their ethical beliefs on issues such as religion, abortion and mercy killing.

A comprehensive investigation that was started by a rumour, found that police had questioned jurors in an inappropriate manner which may have led them to be partial.