One of the men responsible for the death of Sgt. Andrew Harnett has been granted parole after pleading guilty to manslaughter in January 2022, as reported by CBC News.
21-year-old Amir Abdulrahman has served 18 months of a five-year sentence for fleeing a traffic stop that led to Harnett being fatally dragged 400 metres before colliding into oncoming traffic. Abdulrahman was a passenger in the vehicle.
A panel from The Parole Board of Canada ruled Thursday that Abdulrahman’s risk to the public was “manageable.” The Board decided he would live in a halfway house in Calgary for the next six months and that he would be granted leave privileges.
The Board concluded that since Abdulrahman did not have a significant criminal history and that he has accepted his role in the sergeant’s death, his risk to the public has not met the threshold for a more serious punishment.
Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Robert Hall initially intended to sentence Abdulrahman to six years but reduced it due to his expression of remorse and his guilty plea.
Since Abdulrahman was not the driver of the vehicle, Hall decided that he was merely a “minor participant” in the fleeing.
The driver of the vehicle, who was only 17-years-old at the time of the incident, will receive an adult sentence. The Crown wants the man, who is now 20-years-old, to serve anywhere from 11 to 13 years in prison for manslaughter.
In light of the Trudeau government announcing new legislation on bail reform Tuesday, premiers and police associations across the country are pushing lawmakers to do more in addressing rising crime rates in major cities.
The new legislation implements reverse-onus bail conditions for those accused of severe violent offences with weapons, if they were previously convicted of a similar violent crime in the last five years or if the alleged crimes involve intimate partner violence or firearms.
Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre reacted to the new measures saying that if he was prime minister, he would waive offenders’ rights to a bail hearing and require violent offenders to remain behind bars throughout their trial.