New details are emerging about what the courts and probation officials knew about Basil Borutski a year before he murdered Nathalie Warmerdam, Anastasia Kuzyk and Carol Culleton in 2015.
And advocates working to end violence against women say they hope the justice system will do more to monitor domestic offenders and protect victims in light of the problems in this case.
Borutski was convicted Nov. 24 of two counts of first-degree murder in the shootings of Kuzyk and Warmerdam, and one count of second-degree murder for strangling Culleton. He is sentenced to life in prison and he’ll find out how long he’ll be ineligible to apply for parole at a sentencing hearing in Pembroke, Ont., Tuesday.
During Borutski’s trial in Ottawa, the jury heard his prior criminal convictions for threatening Warmerdam’s family in 2012 and assaulting and choking Kuzyk in 2013.
He was actually on probation for threatening Warmerdam’s son and their dog when he beat Kuzyk. And he was on probation for the offences against Kuzyk when he murdered her, Warmerdam and Culleton on Sept. 22, 2015.
Court also heard he never took part in the Living Without Violence partner assault response program he was ordered to attend in Eganville, Ont., after his offences against the Warmerdams years before the murders.
Disregard for probation noted by court in 2014
By the time Borutski was sentenced to jail for assaulting and choking Kuzyk, the courts had indicated concern — on the record — about Borutski’s repeated flouting of court orders.
“It’s just simply violation after violation of orders,” said assistant Crown attorney Teresa James as she made her sentencing arguments in September 2014, a year before the murders.
‘He’s violating court orders all over the place.’
– Crown attorney Teresa James, Pembroke courthouse, Sept. 12, 2014
“He’s violating court orders all over the place — violating a driving prohibition … violating a weapons prohibition, violating [probation] orders — and all they required him to do … is simply keep the peace and be of good behaviour, and he can’t manage that, in my respectful submission,” she said, according to a transcript.
The judge in the case also expressed concern about Borutski’s disregard for the court.