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Kelowna  

MP denounces sentence

MP Dan Albas says a seven-year sentence for stabbing a stranger in the neck on a transit bus is a "slap in the face."

The Central Okanagan - Similkameen - Nicola member of Parliament says he's been contacted by numerous people expressing outrage that Tyler Jack Newton will serve 4.5 years in jail, after credit for time already served.

"For the family of the victim, Caesar Rosales, this sentence is a slap in the face and an injustice to the memory of a loved one," he said.

Newton admitted to the unprovoked killing of the 55-year-old Rosales, who bled to death while taking the No. 8 bus home from work on Oct. 30, 2014.

The bus was stopped behind Dilworth Shopping Centre on Baron Road at 6:30 p.m. when Newton stood up and stabbed Caesar in the neck. He then exited off the back of the bus and took off. 

In his latest MP Report, Albas called it a "brutal and senseless act of unprovoked murder."

Albas said he believes there are grounds to appeal the B.C. Supreme Court decision.

"In this case I believe that there is adequate evidence that due to the serious and violent nature of this crime, both in terms of public safety and interest, that the Crown should appeal this decision immediately," he said.

"In my view, it is important to publicly speak out against these disturbing acts of random violence in the hopes that an appeal will be submitted. While the criminal code is put in place by the federal parliament, the administration of justice is delegated to the provinces, and I am hopeful that local MLAs will also denounce this act and support an appeal."

In an unscientific poll, Castanet asked readers whether seven years in jail is an appropriate sentence.

Nearly 8,700 votes were cast, with more than 96 per cent of respondents saying the sentence was not appropriate. Of that, more than 53 per cent said he should have received life in prison.

Less than two per cent said the sentence was appropriate, while 1.5 per cent were unsure.

A petition has also been started calling for an appeal.

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