Newspaper article The Canadian Press

N.L. Man Who Watched His Father Murder His Mother Wants Stiffer Sentences

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

N.L. Man Who Watched His Father Murder His Mother Wants Stiffer Sentences

Article excerpt

N.L. man wants stiffer murder sentences


A Newfoundland man who was four years old when he saw his father brutally beat his mother to death says he's living in fear knowing Dale Ogden is out on day parole and believes he should have received a more punitive sentence.

Daniel Benoit, 22, said he wants to start a national conversation about murder sentences and Canada's justice system in general, which he says lets convicted murderers off too easily.

Ogden was sentenced to life in prison for the second-degree murder of his wife Judy Ogden in early 2000, and the judge set his parole eligibility at 14 years. He has been out on day parole since September after being released from William Head Institution in Victoria, B.C.

"He can go and see his family. He can walk down the street. He can live a normal life," said Benoit in a phone interview from his home in Stephenville, N.L., on Wednesday.

"Meanwhile, when it comes time to see my mother for her birthday or Mother's Day or Christmas, the only chance I have is to walk up and speak to a headstone that's stuck in the ground. I'll never get a chance to hug my mother again, or kiss her, or tell her I love her. He took that away."

Benoit, who legally changed his last name to his mother's maiden name, said Dale Ogden was an abusive man and an addict with an extensive criminal past, having faced numerous charges including assault, theft and fraud.

He and his wife were headed for divorce and he was under a court order to stay away from her. Nevertheless, Ogden would drive past their home in Port au Port West, N.L.. Benoit's mother was so afraid, she had the windows and doors barred.

"My mom knew she was going to die," said Benoit. "He was a very violent man. He was strict with women and wanted 100 per cent control. Basically he thought, 'If I can't have you, no one can have you.'"

On July 23, 1997, Benoit said Ogden forced his way into the home. …

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