Matthew de Grood, who in 2014, stabbed to death Zackariah Rathwell, Jordan Segura, Kaitlin Perras, Josh Hunter, and Lawrence Hong, is seeking absolute discharge.
An absolute discharge would essentially absolve de Grood of the offences with no conviction registered.
De Grood was found not criminally responsible for the stabbing deaths of the five individuals at a house party in Brentwood, Calgary.
This latest decision lies with the Alberta Court of Appeal.
The families of the five victims have consistently opposed any additional freedoms or privileges for de Grood.
“He’s not happy where he is, but that’s too bad. He killed five people,” said the father of Joshua Hunter, Barclay Hunter. Joshua’s mother, Kelly Hunter, said “We’re not happy where our kids are either.”
“We have no healing. Because we do this every year,” she added.
“Nobody ever thinks about the families. Like, I’ve been stressed about this for days,” said Patty Segura, the mother of Jordan Segura.
In June, Alberta’s highest court ruled against de Grood’s previous appeal, upholding a 2022 decision by Alberta’s Criminal Code Review Board, which determined that he still poses a significant risk to public safety.
The decision came after an assessment of de Grood’s mental health and found he still presented a potential danger to society.
During his first-degree murder trial in 2016, it was revealed that de Grood had sent ominous messages and expressed delusional thoughts in the hours leading up to the stabbings.
He was subsequently found not criminally responsible due to undiagnosed and untreated schizophrenia.
Since then, de Grood’s freedoms and privileges have been subject to review by the board.
Annually, the board assesses whether he can safely transition back into the community.
In 2019, they allowed him to live in a group home in Edmonton based on reports that he was a “model patient” and his condition was in remission.
De Grood’s lawyer, Jacqueline Petrie, argued before the Court of Appeal in June that her client has remained stable on medication, poses a low risk of reoffending, and should be allowed to reintegrate into the community.
She also alleged procedural unfairness in the 2022 review, claiming it was tainted by political interference.