Victim’s family calls for changes

Petition seeking new guidelines for bail proceedings in wake of Penticton woman’s death

Lynn Kalmring

Lynn Kalmring

The family of Lynn Kalmring, the Penticton woman shot and killed this summer, are calling for change to Canadian law.

“It’s not just about our story, this is about having a voice and making a change for the people that are unfortunate enough to follow and be victims of violent crimes after us,” said Kalmring’s niece Dawn Jenkins. “When I watch the news and read the paper with similar stories my heart breaks for them and I feel like I have to do something. I can’t just sit and watch anymore, I need to do something more, and my family all feel that way.”

It is the reason they have started a campaign they call Lynn’s Law. The family is circulating two petitions with a goal to reach 100,000 signatures and have them read in the House of Commons. They are calling for changes to the bail proceeding system and the victims’ bill or rights.

On Aug. 16 Keith Wiens, a retired RCMP officer, was arrested and charged with the second-degree murder of his common-law partner, Kalmring, in their South Main Street home. He has since pled not guilty.

The family’s frustration with the judicial system came to a boiling point in August when Wiens was set free on bail conditions which included handing over his passport, living under the supervision of his brother, not to possess or consume drugs or alcohol, turning over his firearms and a deposit of $50,000.

“I live just outside of Edmonton and there was a young guy out with a trench coat exposing his privates, well he didn’t get out on bail. It makes no sense to me how these decisions are made. There seems to be no rhyme or reason,” said Jenkins.

Kalmring’s family has set up the website www.justiceforlynn.webs.com and are asking people to sign the petition to help bring it to the House of Commons. The website also goes into detail over what the family would like to see changed in Canadian law.

One of the changes they are asking for is stricter bail requirements for violent crimes. The Canadian Criminal Code determines if bail is to be granted by evaluating protection of the public, victim and witnesses, the risk the accused will commit a criminal offence if released, the likelihood the accused will appear in court as scheduled, and requirements to maintain confidence in the administration of justice. The family is calling for those accused of violent offences to undergo stringent psychological testing prior to the bail hearing.

They would like to see that in the event of a violent crime that results in the death of the victim, the offender should not be eligible for bail until the conclusion of a preliminary hearing.

“Following other stories in the news and speaking with the public, everyone feels the same way, that violent offenders are repeatedly being provided these types of chances by being released into the community and we are repeatedly being victimized,” said Jenkins.

In all cases of murder charges, the family contends that curfew or house arrest and tracking technology to ensure compliance to bail conditions should be mandatory.

The family would also like to see changes to the national victims bill of rights.

They want clear roles and responsibilities for the Crown, police and service workers in regards to informing victims and families of their rights. They want it to be mandatory that the Crown should consult with victims and families about court dates, plea bargains, compensation programs and victim services in all provinces.

During bail hearings the family also would like to see changes that allow victims and families to have the ability to inform the court of concerns about their safety, specifically for violent offences.

Jenkins said they have enlisted the assistance of Okanagan Coquihalla MP Dan Albas, who told the family he would be honoured to present the petition in the House of Commons.

 

Just Posted

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

(Black Press file photo)
EDITORIAL: Curtailing attempts at scams

The true total of losses from all scams and frauds could be much higher than the figures on file

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

(Drive BC photo)
Vehicle incident closes Highway 3 east of Osoyoos

Drive BC says to avoid the area until the road is clear

Osoyoos chef Murray McDonald was ecstatic upon realizing he scored the $1 million guaranteed prize in the June 2, 2021 Lotto 6/49 draw. (Contributed)
Osoyoos chef ecstatic after bagging $1 million Lotto 6/49 win

Chef Murray McDonald was at home and ready to doze off to sleep when he got a text from his wife

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Photograph By MICHAEL POTESTIO.KTW
Former Kamloops security gaurd wants job back after kicking incident caught on video

Rick Eldridge quit when a video surfaced of him kicking a man outside a facility for homeless

People participated in a walk to honour the 215 children found at a former Kamloops residential school, as well as residential school survivors. (Twila Amato/Black Press Media)
Kelowna marks National Indigenous Peoples’ Day with walk to remember Kamloops 215

“Let’s speak the truth and deal with the truth, and heal.”

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

A home on Cameo Drive sustained major damage due to an early morning fire Monday, June 21. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)
UPDATE: Fire sparked during Vernon home renovation

Heavy black smoke from Cameo Drive home, no one inside

The new Civic Memorial Park will incorporate pieces of the 80-year-old arena it replaces. (Artists rendering)
Pieces of Civic Arena reclaimed for new Vernon park

City centre space to incorporate wood from the historic arena

Most Read