pleaded guilty to murder in death of Tori Stafford
WOODSTOCK, Ont. A controversial publication ban that shrouded the case of slain eight year old Tori Stafford in secrecy was lifted Thursday to reveal that earlier this year Terri Lynne McClintic pleaded guilty to first degree murder in the girl death.
The plea, the haunting details of Tori disappearance and the painful victim impact statements delivered by Tori family had been under a much publicized, sweeping pu michael jordan blication ban for more than seven months.
The Supreme Court of Canada declined Thursday to hear an appeal of a decision to lift the ban, and the heartbreaking story of how the Grade 3 student went missing outside her Woodstock, Ont., school can now be told.
Police never released Tori cause of death, but it was revealed in court that she died of multiple blunt force impacts.
McClintic also admitted she went to a Home Depot that day and purchased a hammer and garbage bags.
After McClintic pleaded guilty April 30 and court heard victim impact statements from Tori family during which time her lawyer brought her a bucket as she was clutching her stomach, appearing to be in some distress McClintic read a statement of her own.
didn wake up that morning thinking I would take a child, McClintic said.
can explain my thought process that day Every day I ask myself, Why did I tell myself that everything would be OK? said she was pretty low cards in life and had been dealing with issues and problems she didn specify, and that she resorted to drugs.
Her boyfriend, Michael Rafferty, now 30, was charged with kidnapping and first degree murder. His case has been committed to trial.
Clad in a black pantsuit and with her hair in a bun, McClintic read her statement in a meek, but hurried manner in front of the courtroom packed with Tori family, McClintic family, police officers and dozens of reporters.
It became more and more bizarre toward the end, as she talked about what an impression Tori made on her in the brief time they spent together and a bond they formed. She also suggested she will try to make productive use of her prison time.
want to help others in the way they failed to help me, and will do everything she can to keep other children safe, she said.
It appears that a horrible confluence of events led McClintic to Tori as her victim, and the innocent child only mistake was trusting that the woman just wanted to show her a puppy.
Victoria went missing on April 8, 2009 and her remains would not be found for more than three months.
Tori and her then 10 year old brother Daryn were living with their maternal grandmother at the time, but Tori was to stay at her mom Tara McDonald new house close to their school on the night of April 8.
Daryn always walked Tori home that school year to their grandmother house, but that day Tori was to make the short trip to her mother house by herself.
She lined up with her classmates for dismissal at the end of the school day, but ran back inside because she forgot her butterfly earrings. Those earrings would later be used to help identify her badly decomposed re michael jordan mains.
Meanwhile, McClintic had spent the day picking up food stamps at a church, buying some groceries, picking up some Oxycontin and submitting her resume at an employment centre. She also tried to check her MSN account on the computer there but forgot her password.
Later that day, as McClintic approached Oliver Stephens Public School, Tori happened to be the first child she saw.
Tori brother Daryn, now 12, is suffering enormous guilt for not walking his sister home, their father Rodney Stafford said in a victim impact statement. In his statement to the court, read by his father, Daryn said Tori was the most important part of his world.
was the closest person to me. Me and Tori could barely be apart for a weekend, let alone a lifetime, he wrote.
that I never get the chance to see her again makes me sad. told Tori she had a shih tzu named Precious, and Tori replied that she too had a shih tzu and agreed she would like to see McClintic dog.
The trusting, happy little girl told McClintic that her name was Victoria, but everyone called her Tori. The two began to walk away from the school, as now infamously seen on grainy surveillance video, and with that Tori vanished.
Soon people across the country would know Victoria name, and that she liked to go by Tori, because pictures of her smiling face accompanied news stories about the frantic search.
After Tori disappearance many people, including Tori family, por michael jordan ed over michael jordan that surveillance video, trying to guess at the identity of the woman. Members of the community suggested it was Tori own mother, even though she did not fit the height and weight description.
Police were almost immediately flooded with tips about the identity of the mystery woman, and a few of those early tips suggested it was McClintic, who was 18 years old at the time.
Investigators soon discovered McClintic was wanted on an outstanding warrant for a minor offence, so they arrested her on April 12 the same day thousands of community members attended a candlelight vigil praying for Tori safe return.
In interviews with police McClintic initially denied involvement, but eventually admitted responsibility and provided them with several hours of statements.
She was charged on May 19, 2009 with kidnapping and accessory to murder, which was later upgraded to first degree murder. The Crown dropped the kidnapping charge, which is not unusual when someone pleads guilty to a more serious charge such as first degree murder.