Edward Downey. (Handout via The Canadian Press)

Killer of Calgary mother, daughter gets no parole for 50 years

A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year in the deaths of Sara Baillie, 34, and five-year-old Taliyah Marsman

A man convicted of killing a Calgary mother and her young daughter will have to wait 50 years before he has a chance at parole.

A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year of first-degree murder in the 2016 deaths of Sara Baillie, who was 34, and five-year-old Taliyah Marsman.

The convictions carry an automatic life sentence with no chance of parole for 25 years, but Justice Beth Hughes ruled Tuesday that Downey must wait 50 years before he can ask the parole board for release.

“The gravity of the offence, Mr. Downey’s moral blameworthiness, and his degree of responsibility are at the highest level,” the judge said, noting Downey planned and deliberated on the girl’s murder for hours before he killed her.

Downey showed no emotion as Hughes read her decision. An uncle and cousin of Baillie embraced in the courtroom.

The Crown had argued Downey’s record of escalating crimes since his early 20s and the brutality of the murders warranted consecutive periods of parole ineligibilities — a provision allowed when someone is convicted of multiple murders.

Downey’s lawyers, however, argued that would be tantamount to a death sentence because their 49-year-old client would have no hope of release until his mid-90s.

The trial heard Downey killed Baillie because he blamed her for the breakdown of his relationship with his girlfriend, who was Baillie’s best friend, and that Baillie had dissuaded the woman from working for Downey as an escort.

Jurors heard Taliyah was a witness who needed to be silenced.

Both died by asphyxiation.

The trial heard graphic evidence of how Baillie was found dead in a laundry basket in her daughter’s bedroom with duct tape wrapped around her face, neck and wrists. And her daughter was gone.

Three days later, the girl was found dead in some bushes in a rural area east of the city.

Downey repeatedly denied the killings in his testimony and suggested someone named Terrance was to blame.

He apologized at his sentencing hearing in March to Baillie and Taliyah’s friends and family, but did not admit to killing them.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Barry Marchi’s spirits high as treatment in Seattle continues

Barry Marchi’s spirits are high as he continues treatment in the United… Continue reading

PHOTOS: 2019 Wapiti Music Festival

With eyes to the stage and hands to the sky the crowd… Continue reading

New art gallery opens downtown Fernie

Two local artists, Tara Higgins and Kerri Holmes have joined forces to open H2 Studio Gallery

Search continues for new leads in Mt. Bisaro cave system

Cavers returning October, November to push new leads, extend Canada’s deepest cave near Fernie

Wildfire update in the Southeast Fire Centre

No fires currently pose a threat to structures or communities, says BC Wildfire Service

QUIZ: How much do you remember about Woodstock?

Weekend music festival in Bethel, New York, was held 50 years ago

U16 B.C. fastpitch team named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

Most Read