Brother sentenced to life for killing schizophrenic sister in her Abbotsford home

Published: January 10, 2014

Abbotsford police and The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) investigate the “suspicious death” of a 34-year-old Abbotsford woman who was found in a suite on Austin Avenue in Abbotsford July 22, 2010. Nick Procaylo/ PNG

JENNIFER SALTMAN
VANCOUVER DESI

An Abbotsford man who stabbed his mentally-ill sister to death in 2010 has been sentenced to life in prison with no parole eligibility for 10 years.

Harmohinder Singh Khosa, 43, was found guilty in November of the second-degree murder of 34-year-old Amarjit Kaur Khosa.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Miriam Maisonville delivered her sentencing decision in a New Westminster courtroom on Friday.

On July 21, 2010, Khosa received a call to pick up his mother, Baljinder, at the home she shared with her daughter Amarjit, who was schizophrenic and could be verbally and physically abusive. Khosa picked up his mother and brought her to his home.

Khosa’s father was killed in India in the 1980s and Khosa, the eldest of four children, took responsibility for Amarjit when she was diagnosed with schizophrenia in the late 1990s, a few years after his own diagnosis.

After Khosa picked up his mother, his sister called his house a number of times. Khosa became overwhelmed and decided to kill his sister to prevent her from endangering herself or causing their family worry or shame.

Khosa took a steak knife from his home and drove over to confront his sister. The two argued and Khosa told her, “Amarjit you have bothered us too much,” before stabbing her in the neck area 13 times.

Khosa then returned home, cleaned and hid the knife and washed his clothes.

Khosa admitted to killing his sister, but his lawyer argued that Khosa was delusional and had a psychotic break when he killed Amarjit, but Judge Maisonville disagreed.

“He was angry and frustrated and thought it was to Amarjit’s benefit to kill her — but he knew the act was morally and legally wrong,” Maisonville said in her November decision.

There is an automatic life sentence for adults convicted of murder, however the period of parole eligibility for someone convicted of second-degree murder can vary from 10 to 25 years. Crown and defence had asked for a 10-year period of parole ineligibility.

“I find no reason to depart from the joint submission and I find it is appropriate,” Maisonville said.

Outside court, defence lawyer Brij Mohan said Khosa has 30 days to file an appeal and indicated that it’s likely he will appeal the conviction.

Mohan said he will have to review the judge’s decision and consult with his client.

“For the most part, it’s nothing else but a sad case,” Mohan said. “The family has to suffer. They have been suffering — they will suffer for the rest of their lives.”

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