Full parole denied for man who strangled wife, buried body in their Calgary home

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BOWDEN, Alta. — A man who strangled his wife and cemented her body in a basement wall of their Calgary home has been denied full parole, but an assessment on his risk to society has been ordered to determine if he will once again be released on day parole.

Allan Shyback was convicted of manslaughter and causing an indignity to a body in the 2012 death of Lisa Mitchell.

He was sentenced to seven years in prison, but the Alberta Court of Appeal later increased the term to 10 years.

Shyback had his previous day parole revoked in 2019 after he failed to inform authorities of any sexual or non-sexual relationship with a woman. He had sex with a massage parlour worker and was found to have various sex toys in his room at a halfway house.

His parole officer told the Parole Board of Canada Friday that Shyback had been transferred back and forth between medium and minimum security, and had been hoarding pills after failing to take his bipolar medication for a month.

"Mr. Shyback has not demonstrated enough sustained positive behaviour to be manageable in any type of release into the community," said Laura Power, who sat next to Shyback during the hearing at Bowden Institution in central Alberta.

"Therefore our recommendation today is to deny both day and full parole."

Shyback admitted he had made a mistake and said he stopped taking the pills because they were no longer working.

"My biggest problem is self-sabotage," Shyback said.

"I feel the best action for me going forward would be to pretty much forget about full parole. I do feel that my best movement going forward would be to be placed in the halfway house until my statutory release date, which is in eleven months."

Shyback testified at his trial that he endured years of domestic abuse by his wife and killed her in self-defence when she attacked him with a knife.

He told court that he panicked, put her body inside a plastic bin and cemented it into a basement wall of their home. He told Mitchell's family that she had left and sent them fake messages from her as he continued to live in the home with their two children.

The chairwoman of the panel told Shyback he had a history of deceit.

"There was deceit in your offending, there's deceit on day parole and there was deceit with the hoarding of the medication and not being open and honest so it's kind of a running theme," she said.

Shyback said regrets what he did.

"My role in it is that I'm ultimately responsible for the loss of her life which I regret immensely. And my actions going forward from that are inexcusable," he said. "They're unforgivable and there's nothing I can say to change that.

"All I can do is continue to try and get better."

Shyback was asked what would happen in the future if he met someone he was interested in while on day parole.

"I have to let my parole officers know about that. I do have the desire to form a relationship and I don't think that is an unusual desire to have," he replied.

While full parole was denied, the board reserved its decision on day parole saying it didn't have enough information to make a decision.

It requested a psychological risk assessment which could take up to two months to complete.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 21, 2021.

— By Bill Graveland in Calgary

Follow @BillGraveland on Twitter

The Canadian Press