The Coalition for Gun Control/Pour le Controle des Armes

Thestar.com, Apr 13 2010, Peter Small “Dad killed mom, traumatizing son, court told”

Posted by cgccanada on April 14, 2010

What kind of father traumatizes his son by murdering his mother? A friend of Edyta Lewandowski asked that question at a sentencing hearing Tuesday for the slain woman’s estranged husband, Donald Sneyd. “All she wanted was her son, and Don couldn’t let her have that,” Carlene Duncan-Marino said in her victim impact statement.
“So he decided to take her life.” On Feb. 25, 2008, Sneyd fired a bullet into the neck of his 32-year-old wife as she stood in the foyer of his east Toronto home. She had come to pick up their 2-year-old son, who cannot be named, for a regular visit at her home in Maple. The couple were locked in a bitter custody battle, with Sneyd, a social worker, accusing her of being mentally unstable, suicidal and an unfit mother. Charged with first-degree murder, he pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the midst of pre-trial hearings. He brandished a handgun, he claims, to scare her into agreeing to his custody and access terms. But they struggled and he intentionally shot her. “She gave her life for her son,” a sobbing Elzbieta Lewandowski, Edyta’s mother, said in a victim impact statement co-signed by her husband Jerzy. “Our lives are full of grief and pain. Every day we ask ourselves, why her, such a wonderful young girl, full of life and strength?” (…) His guilty verdict has spared the Crown the difficulty of proving its case, which was by no means certain, Rosen said. “The issue of who brought the gun was up in the air.”
But the one who has lost most is the boy, Rosen said. “He has lost a mother forever and a father, essentially, forever.” The judge asked Sneyd if he had anything to say.  “I just want to say I’m sorry, your honour,” Sneyd replied. Trafford will sentence him on Friday.

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