Aleka Esa-Bella Scheyk Gonzales. (CP)

Man gets 15 months in jail for B.C. toddler’s snake-venom death

The two-year-old girl was found dead in 2014 after visiting the Agassiz man’s home

A man has been sentenced to more than a year in jail for the death of a North Vancouver toddler poisoned by snake venom.

Henry Thomas, who is in his early 50s, was sentenced Tuesday in provincial court, five years after the death of two-year-old Aleka Gonzales.

Court records show that with time already served, Thomas received a 15-month jail term and two years’ probation.

He pleaded guilty in July to one count of failing to provide the necessaries of life.

Gonzales was found dead in May 2014 shortly after being returned to her mother following a visit with Thomas at his Agassiz home.

RCMP said an investigation began in 2015 when snakes and other equipment were seized from the man’s property, but Thomas wasn’t charged until January 2019 when tests confirmed the girl had been poisoned.

Police have never said what type of snake was involved or how the girl may have contacted the venom.

The Canadian Press

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