The Penticton woman serving a life sentence for killing the mother of her great-grandchild in 2015 will be out under escort for community service.
Grace Elinor Robotti, 72, is still years away from being able to apply for full parole, but was approved for an escorted temporary absence from custody in July 2021 for administrative reasons, which she did in December of that year without issues or concerns arising.
In 2015, Robotti killed Roxanne Louie by hitting her 26 times with a crowbar, before she had her brother Pier dump the body off a rural Naramata area road and help her cover up and lie about the crime.
Pier was sentenced to 27 months in jail for his part in the killing.
In a lengthy decision rendered on Dec. 14, the Parole Board of Canada approved letting Robotti out for the current escorted temporary absence (ETA) for personal development purposes, which she was unable to do sooner because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Robotti was approved to spend four hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays volunteering at a not-for-profit thrift store at an undisclosed location while being constantly supervised. The arrangement was approved for a year starting from her first day out.
The Parole Board cited the Correctional Service’s recommendation that the ETAs would help build Robotti’s positive support network, all her to continue to improve her personal skills with communication and managing stress while also giving back to the community.
The decision noted that the risk of Robotti re-offending is low, and that with the escort and strict rules for the absences she presents a low risk to the public or of escaping.
Earlier in 2022, Robotti’s progress while incarcerated had earned her a minimum security classification, with a transfer to an undisclosed facility.
“Ms. Robotti, in coming to the decision to approve the community service ETAs, the Board remains ever mindful of the nature and gravity of your index offence,” reads the decision. “The impact your offence had on the surviving family members as reflected in the victim impact statements demonstrates the profound and lifelong harm associated to your actions.
“… The Board has also taken into consideration that aside from the index offence, you have lived the majority of your life in a pro-social fashion and were in the community on bail incident free for approximately two years. In addition, you have remained fully engaged in your correctional plan, have made ongoing progress against your identified needs and have earned a transfer to a minimum security institution.”
Robotti will be eligible for full parole in 2027.
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