Skip to content

B.C. man loses appeal in 1983 conviction for murder of toddler cousin

B.C. Court of Appeal rules on historic murder case
Phillip Tallio was just 17 when he was convicted of murder in 1983 (file photo)

B.C.’s top court has dismissed the appeal of a Bella Coola First Nation man convicted for the killing of his toddler cousin in the 1980s.

Phillip Tallio was 17 when he was charged with first-degree murder in the death of his 22-month-old cousin Delavina Mack, who court has heard had been sexually assaulted in a home in the northern community of Bella Coola.

Nine days into the trial, Tallio pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of second-degree murder.

Tallio, now 54, has said in court that he wasn’t aware of the implications of the plea agreement his trial lawyer had him sign when he was a teenager.

In 2017, B.C.’s Court of Appeal agreed to hear his case. He was released on bail in 2020, after spending 37 years behind bars.

More to come.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

About the Author: Ashley Wadhwani-Smith

I began my journalistic journey at Black Press Media as a community reporter in my hometown of Maple Ridge, B.C.
Read more