A Prince Albert man was sentenced to life in prison without parole for 25 years for the deaths of his parents and seven-year-old sons.
Nathaniel Carrier, 30, entered a guilty plea in January to one count of first degree murder for the death of his son Bentlee and two counts of second degree murder for the deaths of his parents, Denis Carrier, and Sandra Henry, both 56.
In March 2020 Nathaniel Carrier was arrested after police discovered the deaths during a wellbeing check.
His five-year-old daughter Kendrah was found clinging to life and spent more than 50 days in hospital, requiring eight surgeries.
Carrier also pleaded guilty to one count of attempted murder for the injuries sustained by his daughter.
In a packed court room at Court of Queen’s Bench on Wednesday, Justice Alison Rothery accepted a joint-submission statement of facts from the Crown and defence.
It outlined how Carrier had planned to kill the children then himself and described how Carrier had entered into a “suicide pact” with a 23-year-old woman from La Ronge that he met on Whisper, a social media app.
Evidence from police, including messages between Carrier and the women were disclosed to the court in the submission and said the women had a “mutual desire to end their lives together.”
Evidence showed Carrier and the women planned to end their lives by driving head on into a logging truck.
Carrier said he had planned to kill his two children and expressed to a psychologist that they’d be better off with him in the afterlife.
“I did the needful thing, I’m out of PA and coming to see you,” read a message from Carrier to the women.
A friend of the woman alerted her family, saying telling them she may be suicidal.
La Ronge RCMP located Carrier and the woman at a motel in La Ronge shortly after the deaths.
The La Ronge woman was admitted to hospital and revealed the pact to health care workers, according to the agreed statement of facts.
A short while later Carrier was admitted and sent to Victoria Hospital by ambulance. While in transit, I produced two large knives and gave them to the paramedics.
While in custody, he was assessed by a psychiatrist who said Carrier was suffering from drug-induced mental illness, suicidal thoughts and hearing voices.
Flowers left outside Prince Albert, Sask. home where three people, including a seven-year-old boy, were killed.
“Fixed on human suffering that was going to end because of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the psychiatrist in a report.
Carrier was arrested in hospital shortly after the bodies were discovered on March 29, 2020 at a home in Prince Albert’s West Flat neighborhood.
Autopsies showed Bentlee suffered strangulation and knife wounds, Sandra had been strangled and had knife wounds and Denis had been struck with a baseball bat and suffered knife wounds.
Carrier told police he disconnected the home’s security cameras just prior to the killings.
He’s since spent the last two years in jail without bail.
The mother of the children, Heather-Lynn Sumners, was the first to read out her victim impact statements at the sentencing.
She and Carrier had been separated for five years and she was the primary caregiver of the children and Carrier had weekend access to the kids.
Sumners said her son’s murder has taken an emotional toll on her and her family.
“You took a piece of me and smashed it into a million pieces,” Sumners said.
(Lisa Risom/CTV News)She says Bentlee used to read to his little brother and sister and was a “bright light” to those around him.
While reading her statement, Carrier became emotional and cried while wearing handcuffs in his seat.
“He actually heard and was making eye contact and me, telling him what I felt, is like a brick off my shoulders,” Sumners said outside court.
Sumners said she will never forgive Carrier for what happened to their children and she will see it that he has no contact with his daughter Kendrah in the future.
“Our family needs to carry on with life and actually mourn the loss of our grandson and the healing for Kendrah,” said the grandfather of the children, Corey Ferchoff.
Carrier did take the opportunity to speak before the sentence was read out. I have offered an apology for his actions of him and directed apologies to family members of the victims.
“I understand that nothing I can do or say can bring them back … that’s all I can say is sorry and I accept my punishment,” said Carrier.
Rothery sentenced Carrier to life imprisonment for the first-degree murder of his son with no parole eligibility for 25 years.
For the death of his parents, he received life imprisonment with no chance of parole for 18 years. The sentences are not concurrent.
He also received 15 years with no parole eligibility for the attempted murder of his daughter.
Carrier must submit a DNA sample and has a lifetime ban on owning fire arms. Several family members were also granted a no-contact order.