‘Do what is right:’ Father of Tori Stafford demands answers after killer transferred
Katherine DeClerq, CTV News Toronto
Published Monday, January 14, 2019 7:35PM EST
Last Updated Monday, January 14, 2019 8:08PM EST
The father of murdered eight-year-old Victoria ‘Tori’ Stafford is demanding answers from the federal public safety minister, one month after learning that the man sentenced in the young girl’s death had been transferred to a medium-security prison.
Rodney Stafford sent a copy of the letter, which was also posted on Facebook, to Ralph Goodale on Jan. 6. The distraught father says he received a response a few days later, saying the minister’s team was going to forward the concerns to the department of public safety.
In the letter, Rodney Stafford said that he was not asking the minister to “break the laws.”
“I am just asking you to do what is right and return two convicted killers back to where they rightfully belong. In maximum security, behind bars, for life.”
Michael Rafferty was sentenced to life in prison in 2012 in the kidnapping, sexual assault and murder of Tori Stafford. His former girlfriend, Terri-Lynne McClintic, was also sentenced to life in prison in 2010 after pleading guilty to first-degree murder in connection with the girl’s death.
McClintic was transferred to a healing lodge in Saskatchewan in the summer of 2018, but after a public campaign led by Rodney Stafford urging the Liberal government to reverse its decision, she was moved to a medium-security institution for women.
On Dec. 10, Rodney Stafford said he learned that Rafferty had also been transferred from a maximum-security prison to a medium-security facility back in March.
He said he was not notified of the transfer, despite being “on the victim contact list.”
In December, Goodale that he would examine Rafferty’s transfer “to ensure that all the proper rules and procedures have been followed and that Canadians are safe.”
“I haven’t received any information,” Rodney Stafford said in an interview with CTV News London on Monday. “The only thing I’ve heard was that Ralph Goodale was going to order another review into Rafferty’s case. Haven’t heard anything back about the review, haven’t heard anything about security, transfers, nothing.”
The letter outlines the details of Tori Stafford’s murder and asks if the minister has reviewed the incarceration records of either Rafferty or McClintic.
“It’s hard to understand how someone of your power and authority can sit back and continue to watch the injustice unfold, yet do nothing about it,” Rodney Stafford wrote.
Speaking with CTV News London, Rodney Stafford said that the prison sentence is supposed to be a punishment, not a way for the two people sentenced in his daughter’s murder to better themselves.
“There’s no reason for them to be anywhere other than inside their cell,” he said. “There’s basic human rights, but when those ... within the correctional system are living better than a third of Canadian’s on the outside who are struggling, can’t afford dental, can’t afford anything of the nature that betters themselves, how is that better? It’s not right.”
“My main goal is to make sure the two people responsible for the murder of my daughter serve the sentences they were given.”
With files from Canadian Press