Kelly Ellard’s parole delivers blow to Virk family

Kelly Ellard’s parole delivers blow to Virk family

Reena Virk’s mother says Ellard has yet to take full responsibility for her daughter’s death

The mother of Reena Virk questions whether the convicted killer of her daughter has shown enough contrition.

“I don’t think that [Kelly Ellard] has taken full responsibility in Reena’s death, and I think she been minimizing her role,” said Suman Virk in an interview Thursday afternoon. Ultimately, Ellard will have to prove that she is deserving of this chance.

She made those comments after the Parole Board of Canada granted Ellard conditional approval for day parole for six months, pending completion of a residential treatment program for substance abuse. Ellard met with parole board officials Thursday.

Virk said she and her husband Manjit had no input in the decision, which gives Ellard her first real chance at one day being released from prison.

“We have no role in making this decision,” she said.

The couple heard of the decision through media and parole board officials after they had made their decision.

Virk said she and her husband hope the publicity will end soon. “We have gone with our life, since Reena has been killed,” she said.

Thursday’s decision comes one year after officials had denied Ellard’s first request for parole, and just weeks after dozens of Victoria residents came together to pay tribute to Reena Virk, who was killed by Ellard and other classmates on Nov. 14, 1997.

“We know there will be times when these things will happen but let’s look at our own family situations,” Reena’s father Manjit said during the tribute at Kosapsom Park, the place of her death. “What our kids learn in the family stays with them.

“Reena was protected, she was raised with love and kindness [and] she was trusting. When she went to school she had a hard time, people bullied her, people thought she was different [and] she was very puzzled. Why would people pick on her. We always told her, this is part of life, people have different values, they’ll mistreat you, be kind to them, talk to teachers, talk to us.”

The killing of a 14-year-old student at the time shocked and saddened not only those in Victoria, but people around the country.

One of the Saanich Police officers involved in the case was Chris Horsley. He is now a Staff Sgt., but had only been on the job for three years at the time.

“There were murders in Saanich but not one of this magnitude, who happened to be girls,” Horsley said.

“My own daughter, born two days after Reena’s death, went through the school system, and one of her assignments was to read the book about Reena Virk. That was a barometer for me.”

Ellard is now 35 years old with a young child of her own, conceived during a conjugal visit with her boyfriend, who is also behind bars.

She resides at a women’s prison in Abbotsford with her young child and has spent about 15 years behind bars. She was finally convicted of second-degree murder in 2005 after three trials.

Opinion has been mixed with readers; some feeling the crime was so vicious that Ellard should never be released, while others believe she has served her time.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria’s economy is expected to bounce back fairly easily, according to a new report from BMO Capital Markets released April 15. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria in good position to bounce back post-pandemic, says BMO

City’s smaller size, lower COVID-19 caseload and diverse industry base bode well

New figures show Canadian housing prices outpacing those in other developed countries. (Black Press Media file photo)
Canadian housing prices fastest rising in the world

Relative to 2000, housing prices have risen by a factor of more than 2.5

According to Statistics Canada, the unemployment rate in Greater Victoria rose to 5.7 per cent in March 2021, an increase of 0.8 per cent compared to February 2021. But the local unemployment rate remains the among the lowest in Canada. (Black Press Media File)
Greater Victoria’s unemployment rate rises to 5.7 per cent

The increase marks a reversal from recent months, but local economy among the strongest in Canada

Former Oak Bay High Grade 12 student Brandon Kip plays the $100,000 Steinway piano in the Dave Dunnet Theatre. (Black Press Media file photo)
Oak Bay High Alumni Association passes torch to new president

The association has given back more than $70,000 in its 16 years

Saanich police officers were one group of dozens that submitted dance clips to the Greater Victoria Festival Society, to help create the Dance Across Victoria video montage. (Youtube/Screenshot)
WATCH: Saanich police, Victoria mayor bust some moves in new Dance Across Victoria video

Montage features submitted dance clips from across Greater Victoria

Vancouver resident Beryl Pye was witness to a “concerning,” spontaneous dance party that spread throughout social groups at Kitsilano Beach on April 16. (Screen grab/Beryl Pye)
VIDEO: Dance party erupts at Vancouver’s Kitsilano Beach to the dismay of onlookers

‘It was a complete disregard for current COVID-19 public health orders,’ says Vancouver resident Beryl Pye

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland responds to a question during Question Period in the House of Commons Tuesday December 8, 2020 in Ottawa. The stage is set for arguably the most important federal budget in recent memory, as the Liberal government prepares to unveil its plan for Canada’s post-pandemic recovery even as a third wave of COVID-19 rages across the country. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Election reticence expected to temper political battle over federal budget

Opposition parties have laid out their own demands in the weeks leading up to the budget

A syringe is loaded with COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to open up COVID vaccine registration to all B.C. residents 18+ in April

Registration does not equate to being able to book an appointment

Pat Kauwell, a semi-retired construction manager, lives in his fifth-wheel trailer on Maxey Road because that’s what he can afford on his pension, but a Regional District of Nanaimo bylaw prohibits using RVs as permanent dwellings, leaving Kauwell and others like him with few affordable housing options. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Rules against RV living hard on Island residents caught in housing crunch

Regional District of Nanaimo bylaw forcing pensioner to move RV he calls home off private farm land

(Black Press file photo).
UPDATED: Multiple stabbings at Vancouver Island bush party

Three youths hospitalized after an assault in Comox

Selina Robinson is shown in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday November 17, 2017. British Columbia’s finance minister says her professional training as a family therapist helped her develop the New Democrat government’s first budget during the COVID-19 pandemic, which she will table Tuesday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. finance minister to table historic pandemic-challenged deficit budget

Budget aims to take care of people during pandemic while preparing for post-COVID-19 recovery, Robinson said

Each spring, the Okanagan Fest-of-Ale is held in Penticton. This year, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival will not be held. However, beer is still available. How much do you know about this beverage? (pxfuel.com)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about beer?

Put your knowledge to the test with this short quiz

Lord Tweedsmuir’s Tremmel States-Jones jumps a player and the goal line to score a touchdown against the Kelowna Owls in 2019. The face of high school football, along with a majority of other high school sports, could significantly change if a new governance proposal is passed at the B.C. School Sports AGM May 1. (Malin Jordan)
Power struggle: New governance model proposed for B.C. high school sports

Most commissions are against the new model, but B.C. School Sports (BCSS) and its board is in favour

Most Read