Garry Taylor Handlen entered a plea of not guilty to the first-degree murder of the 12-year-old Monica Jack (pictured). (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press)

Man gets life for killing 12-year-old B.C. girl 40 years ago

A case involving Garry Handlen and another B.C. girl’s murder was dismissed

A judge has sentenced Garry Handlen to life in prison for killing a 12-year-old girl in 1978 but moments later dismissed a case involving allegations the man murdered another British Columbia girl three years earlier.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Austin Cullen called Handlen a sexual predator who preys on the vulnerable and weak to commit barbaric crimes and has already been convicted for other sexual assaults.

RELATED: Jury debates fate of man accused of killing 12-year-old B.C. girl 40 years ago

Handlen was found guilty by a jury earlier this month of the first-degree murder of Monica Jack, who disappeared while riding her bike in Merritt on May 6, 1978.

He had also been charged with the first-degree murder of 11-year Kathryn-Mary Herbert in or near Matsqui in 1975, but pleaded not guilty after being sentenced for Jack’s murder and the Crown said it would not be presenting evidence.

A conviction of first-degree murder carries an automatic life sentence of 25 years without parole, although Cullen noted Handlen is eligible to apply for parole in 15 years through the so-called faint hope clause because he killed Jack before that law was eliminated.

READ MORE: Crown tells jury to accept undercover confession of B.C. girl’s murder

Jack’s cousin Debbie John told the sentencing hearing she has carried enormous guilt about Jack’s murder because she was the one to suggest they ride their bicycles into Merritt the day Jack disappeared.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Nuclear medicine temporarily suspended at KBRH

Upgrades expected to be in service by end of September

Early morning house fire in West Trail

19 firefighters responded to structure fire on Topping Street

Greater Trail Torch Run

Greater Trail RCMP and Special Olympics team up for annual Law Enforcement Torch Run.

CWL meets at Trail Legion for dinner

48 members and one guest attended June Holy Trinity CWL meeting

Nine fires burning in West Kootenay

All fires considered to be lightning caused.

PHOTOS: Elusive ‘ghost whale’ surfaces near Campbell River

Ecotourism operator captures images of the rare white orca

Victoria mom describes finding son ‘gone’ on first day of coroners inquest into overdose death

Resulting recommendations could change handling of youth records amidst the overdose crisis

Dash-cam video in trial of accused cop killer shows man with a gun

Footage is shown at trial of Oscar Arfmann, charged with killing Const. John Davidson of Abbotsford

Suicide confirmed in case of B.C. father who’d been missing for months

2018 disappearance sparked massive search for Ben Kilmer

Eight U.S. senators write to John Horgan over B.C. mining pollution

The dispute stems from Teck Resources’ coal mines in B.C.’s Elk Valley

Threats charge against Surrey’s Jaspal Atwal stayed

Atwal, 64, was at centre of controversy in 2018 over his attendance at prime minister’s reception in India

Anti-vaxxer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. to speak in Surrey

He’s keynote speaker at Surrey Environment and Business Awards luncheon by Surrey Board of Trade Sept. 17

Otters devour 150 trout at Kootenay hatchery

The hatchery has lost close to 150 fish in the past several months

B.C. church’s Pride flag defaced for second time in 12 days

Delta’s Ladner United Church says it will continue to fly the flag for Pride month

Most Read