Ontario teen apologizes for trying to kill foster mom


ST. CATHARINES – A teenager who lured his foster mother into her basement where he tried to beat her to death with a shovel and frying pan will undergo intensive treatment over the next two years.

"It's hard to imagine a more horrific scenario," said Judge Peter Wilkie in sentencing the teen, now 17, to a total of three years for attempted murder.

The boy, whose name is protected by the Youth Criminal Justice Act, apologized in court Monday, addressing the judge while his former foster mom looked on from the gallery.

"I take full responsibility and have remorse for what I did," he said.

"She didn't deserve it. Nobody would deserve it."

The court heard earlier that the teen from a northern Ontario children's aid society had been with a Niagara Falls foster family for a short time in May 2012 when he called the 59-year-old mother to the basement.

She went downstairs, and the teen came up behind her with a shovel and hit her on the head. The woman fell and the teen repeatedly hit her with the shovel as she tried to grab it.

At some point, the teen let go of the shovel and the woman crawled to the stairs while he grabbed a couple of frying pans. The teen chased the woman upstairs, beating her with the pans.

The judge said the woman is alive today because, sensing the young man's behaviour, she went downstairs prior to the attack and removed all the knives from the area he was living in.

The woman suffered injuries to her face and hands.

Wilkie said the material on the teen was "sobering" and he had a "dysfunctional, chaotic and alarming" upbringing.

Wilkie said the teen was a high risk to violently reoffend and is dealing with a multitude of issues that were outlined for the court by a psychiatrist.

"The need for an intensive rehabilitative sentence is obvious," Wilkie said.

The teen was sentenced to two years in custody at the Peninsula Youth Centre. Wilkie explained to the court that time could be increased, depending on how treatment goes.

Once out of the centre, the teen will be supervised in the community for six months. He was credited with six months of pre-trial custody.

His former foster mother told the judge she approved of the rehabilitative treatment.

"I'm glad you've put that provision in that he gets the help he needs," she said.

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