A man convicted of manslaughter has been granted full parole after serving almost three years of a five year sentence for his role in the death of a Calgary police officer.
On Dec. 31, 2020, Sgt. Andrew Harnett, 37, died after being dragged by an SUV before being thrown into the path of oncoming traffic.
Amir Abdulrahman, co-accused and a passenger in the vehicle, pleaded guilty to manslaughter in 2021 and was sentenced to five years in prison.
In May, Abdulrahman was granted day parole and last week a Parole Board of Canada panel decided that he can now be released with conditions.
“The board is satisfied that you have continued to make positive progress, while on day parole, and that your risk can be managed on a broader form of release,” reads the decision.
“The board grants full parole at the expiry of the current period of day parole. It is the board’s opinion that you will not present an undue risk to society, if released on full parole, and that your release will contribute to the protection of society, by facilitating your reintegration into society as a law-abiding citizen.”
Abdulrahman has been residing in Calgary in a halfway house, according to CTV News.
The panel said that Abdulrahman accepted full responsibility for his offence and had consistently expressed remorse and regret for the damage he caused. It also said that Abdulrahman has addressed his risk factors through the completion of programs and started working after he was granted day parole.
He is considered to be a low-to-moderate risk to reoffend, according to the board.
“There is no indication that you have returned to any substance use since your release, and you do appear to have continued to distance yourself from the negative peer group and lifestyle you were involved in, at the time of the offence,” reads the decision.
“You are spending time with family and pro-social friends.”
Abdulrahman will have numerous conditions imposed upon him following his release, including no contact with anyone involved in the illicit drug trade, no consumption of drugs and he must abide by his designated treatment plans.
Additionally, he is prohibited from having any contact with the victim’s family or the Calgary police station where Harnett had previously served as an officer.
“The board has also read and considered the letters submitted by the victim’s wife … describing the heart-wrenching impact the offence and loss of the victim has caused her, his family, community, and tragically the child he never got to meet,” said the board.
“Your actions contributed to the death of the victim and tore a hole in the lives of the many people who lost their loved one due to your offence.”
According to the trial, Harnett stopped the SUV after he became aware that its licence plate didn’t match the vehicle’s registration.
The driver of the vehicle, who was only days away from turning 18 at the time of the accident, was charged as a youth with first-degree murder.
During the trial, the driver testified that Harnett put his hand on his gun while approaching the SUV with another officer, which scared him.
When the driver attempted to flee the scene, Harnett grabbed onto the wheel, attempting to get the driver to stop. Neither the driver nor Abdulrahman attempted to help the officer after he was severely injured.
In September, the driver was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to an adult sentence of 12 years in prison by a Calgary judge.