Man who killed B.C. teen not at 'immediate risk' to violently reoffend: lawyer

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NEW WESTMINSTER, B.C. — The man who killed a 13-year-old girl and injured her friend at a high school in Abbotsford, B.C., has been asked to read the victim impact statements related to his crime before he addresses the court.

Associate Chief Justice Heather Holmes told defence lawyer Martin Peters that she would like Gabriel Klein to reflect on the statements given by family members during his sentencing hearing this week.

Klein was convicted of the second-degree murder of Letisha Reimer and the aggravated assault of the other girl, whose name is under a publication ban.

The murder conviction brings an automatic life sentence, but Holmes still must determine when Klein will be eligible for parole and says she'll release her decision July 7.

Peters told the court Klein should be eligible after 12 years, while the Crown is calling for 18.

Peters told the court it's not completely accurate to label Klein a "high-risk to reoffend," because he is willing to continue treatment to control his schizophrenia and his risk only rises if his mental health issues are not properly managed.

Family members of Reimer and her friend addressed the court on Wednesday, describing their concerns that Klein will not receive a fit sentence for the damage he has caused.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 25, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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