VANCOUVER — The B.C. Court of Appeal has unanimously dismissed the case of a mother found guilty of suffocating her eight-year-old daughter.
Surrey, B.C., resident Lisa Batstone was convicted of second-degree murder for smothering her daughter, Teagan, in December 2014.
Batstone, who was 41 at the time, was sentenced in 2019 to life in prison with no parole eligibility for 15 years.
She appealed her conviction and sentence after her trial, arguing her mental health issues were not given adequate weight and the judge was wrong to find she had the intent to kill.
In rejecting Batstone's appeal, Justice Richard Goepel said in the ruling released Friday that although the trial judge made three errors in her decision, all were harmless and didn't impact the conclusion that the appellant had the "requisite intent."
Batstone was described in her original trial as "deeply devoted to Teagan" and to the girl's well-being, but she remained bitter over her divorce and blamed her ex-husband for what she believed were her daughter's "separation anxiety and other struggles."
Lawyers for Batstone had argued for a manslaughter conviction, but the three-judge panel upheld the lower court decision, ruling "there is nothing in the evidence that suggested that the accused’s mental disorders prevented her from forming the subjective intent to kill her daughter."
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 22, 2021.
The Canadian Press