Convicted B.C. child killer wins right to appeal after 34 years in prison

Convicted B.C. child killer wins right to appeal after 34 years in prison

  • June 30, 2017
  •   211

In what his lawyers call an "unprecedented move" the B.C. Court of Appeal is allowing Phillip Tallio to file an appeal of his murder conviction — almost 34 years after the filing deadline passed.

Tallio's lawyers had argued new testing of DNA samples could show he was wrongfully convicted of a child murder.

That claim comes in previously sealed documents, released by the B.C. Court of Appeal.

If true, that would mean Phillip Tallio, who will turn 52 in December, has spent decades behind bars for a crime he didn't commit — more time served than other famous wrongfully convicted Canadian prisoners, such as Donald Marshall (11 years), David Milgaard (23 years) and Ivan Henry (27 years).

According to Tallio's lawyers, new evidence shows a second man — a now-dead close relative of the accused — might have been the real killer.

Publication ban lifted

Until now, the allegations were covered by a publication ban. But on Wednesday more than 800 pages of submissions and affidavits were made public following an order by B.C. Appeal Court Justice Elizabeth Bennett.

Tallio's lawyers were applying to appeal his conviction for second-degree murder more than three decades after the appeal deadline expired. They argued the documents should be released.


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