Sentencing postponed in Castor triple homicide

Sentencing postponed in Castor triple homicide

Jason Klaus and Josh Frank will appear in court again Feb. 14th

Justice Eric Macklin will deliver his sentence in the Castor-area triple homicide on Feb. 14th after he heard submissions from the crown and defence lawyers.

Macklin will decide whether Joshua Frank and Jason Klaus should receive concurrent or consecutive sentences after they were both found guilty of three counts of first-degree murder.

The minimum sentence for first-degree murder in Canada is life in prison, without the possibility of parole for 25 years. This means that if they are awarded consecutive sentences, both Frank and Klaus would be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for 75 years.

Following the sentence hearing, Frank and Klaus both had the opportunity to address the court.

Klaus said it will always be with him what happened that night, and he said committing suicide was at one point something he considered.

He did maintain his innocence saying, “I did not kill my family and the little involvement I did have I will regret for the rest of my life.”

In a short verbal message, Frank apologized to the Klaus family for their pain and loss and apologized to his own family for the pain they had to endure.

Crown Prosecutor Douglas Taylor argued during sentencing proceedings that consecutive sentences would give particular weight to each of the three victims.

Taylor gave more than two dozen aggravating factors which encourages the use of a maximum sentence in this case. He paid particular attention to the fact that three innocent victims were murdered; that the Klaus family farm house was burned down to hide evidence of the crime; and that both Klaus and Frank misled the RCMP during the investigation.

The Crown also requested that both perpetrators must provide a DNA sample, be prohibited from owning firearms or weapons and that a no contact order be put in place for those named.

Allan Fay, defence lawyer for Klaus, urged the court to impose concurrent sentences rather than consecutive.

He argued that prior to the murders, Klaus had no criminal record and was an active member of the Castor community — including his time volunteering with the Elks Club.

Fay also argued that other triple homicides in the jurisdiction, namely the Derek Saretzky case and the Douglas Garland case, were more “gruesome” and the “stark horror” of those cases are absent in this one. Both Saretzky and Garland received the maximum life sentence without the possibility of parole for 75 years.

He also noted given that Klaus is 42-years-old, a 75-year without parole life sentence would mean he would likely die in prison.

Andrea Urquhart, defence lawyer for Frank, argued a life sentence without parole for 75 years would negate any chance of rehabilitation for her client.

She said rehabilitation is a “fundamental aspect of Canadian society” and that it is an “emphasis of our criminal justice system”.

Klaus was originally charged with three counts of first-degree murder and one count of arson in relation to the deaths of his father Gordon Klaus, 61, his mother Sandra Klaus, 62 and his sister Monica Klaus, 40.

Co-accused Frank had also originally been charged with three counts of first-degree murder in relation to the deaths.

The remains of Gordon and Monica Klaus were found in what was left of a burnt-out house in Castor on Dec. 8th, 2013. The body of Sandra Klaus hasn’t been found because police believe her remains were consumed by the fire.

Justice Macklin will deliver his sentence on Feb. 14th at 2 p.m.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw
Alberta eases some COVID-19 restrictions

Salons, barbershops and other personal and wellness services will be open by appointment only

fruit
Diabetes management classes temporarily moving online

AHS program helps participants manage pre-diabetes and Type 2 diabetes

Clearview Public Schools had slight enrolment increase in September. (Image from Facebook)
UPDATED: Due to high winds, school buses will be operating this afternoon at a reduced speed

“Buses will not be operating in the areas of Coronation and Brownfield. Schools are contacting families at this time to pick up your child or children for afternoon transportation after school”

Environment Canada issued a wind warning for parts of central Alberta on Jan. 13, 2021. (Black Press file photo)
Wind warning issued for central Alberta

Environment Canada said strong northwesterly winds will develop in the morning and weaken in the evening

Lesser Slave Lake UCP MLA Pat Rehn. (Facebook)
Kenney kicks Pat Rehn out of UCP caucus after municipal complaints

Rehn had been criticized by municipal leaders in his constituency

blessing
Bentley Blessing Pantry continues to faithfully serve the community

‘We just wanted to make everyone aware that we are still here to serve you throughout this coming year.’

A Suncor logo is shown at the company’s annual meeting in Calgary on May 2, 2019. A worker is missing after a dozer broke through ice on an inactive Suncor tailings pond in northern Alberta.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Worker missing after dozer breaks through frozen tailings pond in northern Alberta

The worker was an employee of Christina River Construction

File Photo
‘You took away some real joy,’ Sylvan Lake Winter Village turned off after vandalism

Sometime during the night of Jan, 12 the light display at the pier was vandalized and damaged

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID clarity: Feds say 42-day gap for 2-dose vaccines OK as provinces race to immunity

‘Realities on the ground’ means that provinces, territories will have difficult choices to make

(Pixabay photo)
Alberta surgeon who hung a noose in a hospital found guilty of unprofessional conduct

College of Physicians and Surgeons says sanctions will be determined at a later hearing

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. The professional group for emergency doctors in Canada wants more transparency about COVID-19 vaccine distribution. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Canadian emergency doctors call for greater transparency on vaccine rollout

Many doctors don’t know when they will be vaccinated and the association says that needs to change

Most Read