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The Parole Board of Canada has granted convicted murderer Brian Doyle another six months of day parole.
It was granted by the Pacific branch in Abbortsford, B.C., earlier this month, according to a review the board sent to The Telegram.
Doyle, now 50, stabbed St. John’s woman Catherine Carroll 53 times on New Year’s Day 1991, took a shower and got dressed as she lay on the floor bleeding.
He then allowed his friend at the time, Greg Parsons, to be wrongfully convicted of the murder in 1994, until DNA evidence cleared Parsons in 1998. Doyle is eligible for full parole next year, as he was convicted of second-degree murder.
“I want justice for my mom, that is all I want,” Parsons said Thursday, adding that the decision is disturbing.
“You can’t make this story up, but I lived it.”
Almost 30 years on, Parsons still feels cheated by the Newfoundland and Labrador justice system and an inquiry into wrongful convictions.
He said the Crown attorney’s office should have pursued a first-degree murder charge against Doyle.
“This guy … was ready to kill again, a hardened criminal who should have been put in federal prison for the rest of his life. Please God he doesn't kill again. I feel strongly something is going to happen when he gets his full parole. Look out,” Parsons said.
He wants a meeting with new Premier Andrew Furey and new Justice Minister Steve Crocker.
A documentary on the case by the U.S. Investigation Discovery Channel, “Impact of Murder," is set to air Sept. 26, Parsons said.
“This is on the world stage now,” said Parsons, a longtime firefighter.
“I am not an intimidated young man (anymore) and nobody is going to intimidate me. I am ready for this battle.”
Although the parole board will not reveal a prisoner’s location, Parsons had previously expressed outrage that Doyle was serving at “Club Fed” — the nickname given to the William Head Institution in B.C., which is surrounded on three sides by the Pacific Ocean, about 30 kilometres northwest of Victoria.
In January 1991, after a night of partying, Doyle broke into Carroll’s home through a basement window and then went into the kitchen for a knife. He went into a bedroom, took off all of his clothes and then entered Carroll’s bedroom. When she discovered Doyle, she got up and entered her bathroom, where he repeatedly stabbed her. Parsons discovered her body the next day.
About 12 years after the murder, Doyle confessed to an undercover police officer during a sting operation.
The new parole board decision, while extending Doyle’s day parole, refused to allow him overnight leave.
“As your victim's son was originally convicted for the murder, he not only has to live with the extreme violence you perpetrated against his mother, but also the lasting trauma he endured by being originally convicted for the crime,” the parole board said in its decision. “Other family members express an immense sense of betrayal when they learned that a man they considered part of their family had been responsible for the victim's death. The family has lost trust in others and in the justice system as a whole. The victim's family members continue to live in fear of you. One statement, in particular, requests that you never be able to return to Newfoundland.”
While on day parole, Doyle was participating in online dating — he was cautioned by his parole supervisor about “the dangers of not really knowing who the person is and potential pitfalls in the use of internet dating sites.”
“This killer is out there trolling dating sites and they say he’s a moderate risk to reoffend?” Parsons said.
Doyle has a job, but appears to have lied to a previous employer about why he was leaving, claiming he was directed to quit by his parole supervisor.
Despite the victim impact statements regarding the ongoing effect of Carroll’s brutal murder, the board said it was placing considerable weight on the fact Doyle successfully completed a myriad of programs and intervention.
“While the board has concerns, given the extreme nature of your crime and the deeply entrenched criminal values you have demonstrated in the past, these positive factors and demonstrated gains are sufficient for the board to determine that your risk on a continued period of day parole would not be undue," the board said.
In a decision in April, the parole board noted Doyle had limited understanding of the sexual component of his offence, which is concerning.
“The board notes that you were sexually rejected by the victim on the night of the murder and reacted with rage and extreme violence,” the board said to Doyle.
It remains a concern and he has not received treatment directly focused on that aspect of the crime, which, if not addressed, poses future risk, the board said.
Doyle had claimed he had a sexual relationship with Carroll, a notion that disgusts Parsons.
“He never had a relationship with my mother,” Parsons said, noting Doyle took a pair of someone else’s shoes from a party to sneak into Carroll’s house, and after killing Carroll and cleaning himself up, went back to the party to give himself an alibi.
In 2001, Doyle was under the belief that the undercover agent was inviting him to join an organized crime group, and had offered him $20,000 to commit a murder of his fictitious wife. Doyle admitted murdering Carroll and bragged he could set up the murder in such a way as to point guilt onto someone else.
Besides other conditions, Doyle continues to be banned from contacting any of Carroll’s family and must not enter Newfoundland and Labrador.