SASKATOON – A trial set to get underway on Monday ended abruptly with a guilty plea to a lesser charge. A mother accused of stabbing her son in a bathroom has now saved the boy from having to testify nearly three years after police first responded to the call.On March 28th, 2013, officers with the Saskatoon Police Service went to a home in the 400 block of 9th Street East to help resolve a child custody dispute. Story continues below
At the time, a 10-year-old boy answered the door and told officers he needed help and that something was wrong inside. Upon entering, police found the woman and her six-year-son inside a bathroom both suffering from stab wounds.The boy’s neck at been cut and he had a stab wound to the abdomen, she had cut her wrists and had abdominal stab wounds.She was charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault, pleading guilty to the lesser charge on Monday at Court of Queen’s Bench.“The crown is of the opinion that it was an appropriate guilty plea to an appropriate charge having reviewed all the evidence,” said William Collins, Senior Crown Prosecutor.Given the plea and the time that has passed, the crown wanted to fast-track to sentencing this week.Instead, the trial judge set the matter over to mid-April after her defence attorney asked, in front of a courtroom of family and friends, for more time so the woman could be with at her grandmother’s 95th birthday.“If I was here requesting someone to be going to a birthday party under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t even be making the request but this is a unique request, a unique situation where we anticipated the court would think it was reasonable,” said Criminal Defence Lawyer Brian Pfefferle.“We’re very grateful that he did consider it and we anticipate much to the accused’s word that she’ll be here in April and will be starting her sentence without any issues.”Until then, the 35-year-old mother of two has been released on conditions. Her sentence upon her return to court as suggested in a joint submission, a lengthy prison term of five and a half years.“Our court of appeal has said that the starting point for this sort of situation is four years and negotiations between crown and defence we ended up in that range,” added Pfefferle who suggested psychiatric issues played a significant role in what happened that evening.“Obviously, in our view this wouldn’t have happened if not for significant psychiatric issues.”The woman’s identity is protected by a publication ban and neither one of her boys now aged nine and 14 have seen her since that frightening night. The defence says by entering the plea, the woman spared her children from having to go through the torture and trauma of testifying.“We take no joy in being involved in these sorts of cases, they keep us up at night frankly,” Pfefferle said“Obviously a tragedy for sure, a significant tragedy for everyone involved -her, her extended family, the boys, everybody. It’s a sad situation.”Sentencing submissions are now scheduled to take place on April 18th.