Shock was what Lorrie Blackmore was feeling after Kiera Bourque pled guilty to manslaughter in relation to the death of her son.
There were tears in the Penticton Supreme Court gallery Feb. 24 as Bourque submitted her unexpected plea.
“We had no idea that she was going to be pleading guilty today,” said Blackmore outside the courthouse. “That’s always been an option that she could change her plea at any time. Hearing her plead guilty was a shock.”
In April last year, Bourque appeared in court charged with manslaughter in the death of her 17-year-old boyfriend, Devon Blackmore. The teen died on April 2, 2017, at a Penticton residence after he was allegedly administered morphine by Bourque.
Bourque had elected for trial by jury, which was scheduled to begin on April 6, 2020.
Blackmore stood in front of the Penticton Law Courts as she spoke to media, her family members standing close by.
“For us, it has been a long three years,” she continued. “Very emotional, up and downs.”
She explained that though she was not looking forward to sitting through a trial and hearing every minute of how Devon passed away, she was hoping to hear a jury say the word ‘guilty.’
Blackmore noted manslaughter can come with a minimum sentence of community service to a maximum of life in prison.
“I’m hopeful for time but I’m realistic that she might only get a couple of years,” she said. “We know that nothing’s going to bring Devon back. We miss him every second of every day.”
As a youth, Devon played minor hockey in Penticton for many years. His mother described him as “one of those all-around kids” who was friends with everybody.
“He had a full life ahead of him; we have 17 years of memories. But we’ll have another 40 years with missed birthdays and missed Christmases,” said his mother.
“No grandkids from him.”
Blackmore said the hardest part is looking forward without him.
The matter is set to return to Penticton Supreme Court on June 8 for sentencing.