A man who killed six members of a B.C. family in 1982 has been denied parole. Shelley Boden, a relative of the victims, says her family still sees David Shearing as a monster.
A convicted mass murderer apologized to the family of his victims Tuesday, but his words failed to convince them or the National Parole Board that his remorse was real. David Shearing, 53, shot and killed George and Edith Bentley, their daughter Jackie and her husband, Bob Johnson, while the family was on a camping trip in the B.C. interior in 1982. He kept the Johnsons' daughters Janet, 13, and Karen, 11, alive for almost a week and sexually assaulted them before taking them into the woods, one at a time, and killing them, too. "I continue to be shamed, thoughtful and aware of the devastation I have caused," he said at his parole hearing in the chapel at the Bowden Institution, north of Calgary. "My actions will always cause me to feel an overwhelming sense of shame and a lifetime of pain and regret. I am and always will be deeply sorry for the loss I caused them." Although the Bentley's granddaughter Kelly Nielsen said she detected some remorse in Shearing's words, Shelley Boden, who was the Johnsons' niece, wasn't buying it. "He said he was sorry for the first time ever. I never heard that before," Boden told reporters after the hearing. "It took him 30 years to say it? Stay there another 30 years to actually feel how sorry you really are." The National Parole Board ruled Shearing, who now goes by his mother's maiden name, Ennis, still has violent sexual fantasies, hasn't completed sex offender treatment and is not ready for freedom. "It's quite hard to imagine any crimes more serious or more reprehensible than the ones you committed," the board said at the conclusion of the hearing. "There still is present a large number of risk concerns." His parole officer also recommended against his release. "It would be frivolous for me to say he could safely be released into the community," the officer reported.