Emotional day in court at McConnell's sentencing
Published Wednesday, May 9, 2012 6:19PM MDT
The sentencing hearing for the mother convicted of manslaughter in the drowning deaths of her two sons last month began Wednesday morning in a Wetaskiwin courtroom.
On Wednesday, the Crown Prosecutor asked for a sentence of 12 years for Allyson McConnell, the Millet woman who was found guilty of manslaughter in April.
"It was not a momentary lapse of judgement," The Crown Prosecutor argued. "It was a clear decision to end a life. A decision she made twice."
The Crown also asked that McConnell sentence include one-to-one credit for time already served, instead of two-to-one credit, McConnell has been in custody for two years.
The conviction of manslaughter can carry a sentence ranging from probation to a sentence of life in prison.
Initially, McConnell was charged with second-degree murder, but the charges were downgraded.
Emotional victim impact statements were also read in the courtroom Wednesday morning. In Curtis McConnell's statement, the father of the two slain toddlers talked about how finding his children dead has affected his life.
"To come home to find my kids left to rot by the person I loved and trusted more than anyone else has made it so hard to trust anyone again."
Allyson McConnell had admitted to drowning her two sons Connor and Jayden in the bathtub of her family home, but during her trial she testified that she couldn't remember anything about the events of that weekend in early 2010.
Court was told McConnell, who is originally from Australia, had a long history of suicide attempts that began after she was impregnated by her father when she was 15.
On the morning of February 1, 2010 McConnell drove to Edmonton, parked at a toy store, had lunch and then tried to kill herself by jumping off a bridge onto a busy freeway.
During the trial court also heard her estranged husband, Curtis McConnell, pulled the lifeless bodies of his little boys from a tub of freezing cold water that night. He testified he frantically ran to get a neighbour to come and look in the bathroom, just in case he had imagined the whole thing.
Curtis McConnell said their divorce had been bitter and they had fought over custody of the boys, whom McConnell wanted to take back to Australia with her.
On Wednesday, McConnell's sentencing was adjourned to June 4.
With files from Serena Mah