Chamberlin denied early parole

Ryan Chamberlin left Swift Current Provincial Court on May 6, 2015 after being sentenced to five years in jail on four counts of sexual abuse against underage boys in the Southwest. Southwest Booster file photo

Ryan Chamberlin was denied both full parole and day parole during a Parole Board of Canada decision on October 24.

Chamberlin received a five year sentence on May 6, 2015 after pleading guilty to four counts of sexual assault against minors. The abuses took place across the Southwest over a 22 year period between 1994 and 2015. Initially, a total of 10 charges were laid against Chamberlin, with six charges stayed by the Crown. He is serving time for sexual assault, invitation to sexual touching, sexual interference, and sexual exploitation.

Chamberlin is now eligible for statutory release on September 5, 2018 after serving two-thirds of his sentence.

In light of the growing number of allegations against actor Kevin Spacey and director Harvey Weinstein, the mother of one of Chamberlin’s victims is feeling victimized all over again by the prospect of Chamberlin being released in less than a year.

As Chamberlin’s abuses took place over a two decade period, she is hoping that any other victims who have remained silent over the years are able to come forward.

In a victim impact statement to the Parole Board she asked them to choose the importance of allowing victims time to heal over the early release wishes of a convicted pedophile.

“I need your support today to allow my son, who is a child, to be able to stay a child for longer, to heal and to feel secure while he does this,” she said in her impact statement.

She also pointed to a National Parole Board report of Chamberlin’s progress in programming available in prison. She feels that information rings hollow as the board was also informed that Chamberlin professed to having “improper thoughts” of an underage male which appeared in a television show he was viewing.

And, having witnessed his tactics of grooming the family and the manipulation of her son, she is concerned that Chamberlin’s argument that his offences were in part of his own homosexuality shows little rehabilitation, or remorse.

Chamberlin had also been sentenced to four months in prison following a 1998 sexual assault conviction in British Columbia where he was found guilty of a sexual assault of a five-year-old boy. He subsequently committed a number of offences following that sentence, including the incidents in the Southwest.

Chamberlin was arrested on February 26, 2015 after a single victim came forward. Chamberlin had been a hockey and baseball coach with youths, where two of the incidents stemmed from.

The City of Swift Current began work on developing the Safe Places Youth Certified initiative in 2014 in response to the high profile Graham James sexual abuse case, but the importance of their abuse prevention efforts were intensified when the Chamberlin charges were laid. Safe Places takes a leadership role in closing the cracks which have allowed pedophiles an opportunity to work with young children.

With Chamberlin’s statutory release coming up in September, The Parole Board will be conducting a paper review of his file nine months before his release to decide whether to impose any special conditions.

She said that Chamberlin serving only three years and four months for his crimes is not a fair punishment for someone who has had such devastating impact on his victims. She fears that even with high profile abuse cases involving Sheldon Kennedy and Theo Fleury, that the laws in Canada will only change if the child of someone in the federal government is impacted.