Convicted killer Kelly Ellard, who now goes by the name Kerry Sim, has been granted extended day parole and overnight leave by the Parole Board of Canada.
Ellard, 37, was convicted of second-degree murder for the 1997 killing of 14-year-old Reena Virk near Victoria and is currently serving a life sentence. She received day parole in November 2017, but she is now allowed to stay outside of custody overnight.
On Nov. 14, 1997, Virk was swarmed and beaten under a bridge in Saanich on Vancouver Island, B.C., by a group of teenagers, mainly girls. Ellard returned with an accomplice after the beating, dragged Virk to the Gorge waterway, and held her underwater until she stopped moving.
The parole board's decision says Ellard "remained defiant for years following the murder" and it took her a long time to express remorse and accept responsibility. According to the board, Ellard's most recent psychological risk assessment, done in 2016, "points to a moderate to high-moderate risk of future violence over the longer term."
The board also noted Ellard's institutional behaviour was "problematic at times," but her last reported incidence of violence was in 2009 and since that time Ellard has completed a number of correctional programs and demonstrated "stability and progress" according to therapy reports.
Ellard is currently working and is also the mother of a child she became pregnant with and gave birth to while incarcerated. Her overnight leave has been authorized to help her "further reintegrate into the community."
The board attached conditions to Ellard's day parole. She may not consume alcohol or drugs, associate with any person involved in criminal activity or substance abuse or contact any member of Virk's family.
Ellard lives in a halfway house at an undisclosed location. Her day parole has been extended for six months.