Kamloops this Week

Kamloops woman who set fire to kids granted day parole

Donna Hysop is serving a life sentence after being convicted of second-degree murder and attempted murder

  • Apr. 17, 2018 11:39 a.m.

Kamloops this Week

A Kamloops woman who more than 20 years ago set fire to her two young children — killing her five-year-old daughter and leaving her three-year-old son disfigured and seriously injured — has been granted day parole despite continually maintaining her innocence while behind bars.

Donna Hysop, 50, is serving a life sentence after being convicted of second-degree murder and attempted murder stemming from the attacks in a Juniper Ridge townhouse on March 18, 1997.

The Parole Board of Canada cited Hysop’s refusal to accept responsibility for the incident in denying her request for unescorted temporary absences in December, but has now granted her day parole — meaning she must return to her halfway house each night.

Parole officials also noted “recent concerning behaviour” on Hysop’s file. In January, she became involved in a physical altercation with a fellow inmate. Both were determined to have been “instigators,” according to parole documents.

The documents also touch on Hysop maintaining her innocence and minimizing her role in the arson attacks on her kids.

“File content indicates you may never accept full responsibility for your offending and have not done so for 20 years,” the documents read, noting a clinical report found Hysop’s “claim of innocence and her inability to accept responsibility” were not risk factors for future offending.

“I consider your risk of violence to be relatively low to very low while in custody and I consider your risk, if released to the community, to be relatively low,” the report read.

The report was prepared in December, a month before Hysop got into an altercation while in custody.

“Your denial today is aligned with your denial over the years,” the parole documents state, noting Hysop has “demonstrated no discernible remorse.”

“The gravity of the index offence is indescribable — the death of an innocent child and the permanent harm caused to another is on the most extreme end of severity. The victims have been steadfast in their attendance at hearings and their belief that you ought not to be released. They have indicated they need safeguards put in place to protect them from further harm should you be released.”

While on day parole, Hysop will reside at a halfway house in the Lower Mainland. She will be under conditions prohibiting her from having any contact with victims or victims’ families, including on social media, and will not be allowed within a 100-kilometre radius of the community in which her son now lives.

Hysop will also be barred from being in a position of trust with regard to any child under 14 and must take regular counselling.

Hysop was convicted based largely on confessions she made in the presence of police, firefighters and neighbours. In court, she said her comments were taken out of context.

She has been eligible for parole since 2008, but has had previous requests turned down.

Hysop’s parole status will be reviewed in six months.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Children gather for Easter festival in Summerland

Fourth annual Easter Egg-stravaganza included activities and egg hunt

Update: RCMP confirm body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: A sunny Easter Sunday

Temperatures will peak at approximately 20C region-wide

Summerland student examines effects of sound

Science fair project will go to national competition in New Brunswick

Hedley driver drama may come to a close next month

A Hedley man facing 11 different counts of breaching probation and driving… Continue reading

‘No answers:’ Canadians react to Sri Lanka bombings that killed hundreds

The co-ordinated bomb attacks killed at least 207 people and injured 450 more on Easter Sunday

Pets still missing after Peachland home fire

Two Pomeranians and two cats are missing after fire

Regional district backs more consultation on plans to help caribou

It is feared that the caribou recovery plans could result in closure of backcountry areas

Okanagan student shows skill at provincial finals

Aidan Eglin of Armstrong won website development event at Skills Canada’s B.C. finals in Abbotsford

Kootnekoff: Easter Bunny legal woes

Several years ago, our young daughter needed to know: “Is Santa Claus… Continue reading

Okanagan fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware cats were in wood pile in yard near garbage pile fire that got away

Okanagan township’s open burning winds down

Spallumcheen reminds residents of regulation changes as open burning concludes April 30

Most Read