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Woman who killed Reena Virk calls new TV series disrespectful to victim

Kerry Sim, formerly Kelly Ellard, is seen in a file image. Kerry Sim, formerly Kelly Ellard, is seen in a file image.
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The B.C. woman convicted of killing Reena Virk described the TV series dramatizing the notorious 1997 murder as disrespectful to the victim and her family.

The comments from 41-year-old Kerry Sim – who changed her name from Kelly Ellard – are summarized in a parole board decision confirming the continuation of her day-release privileges.

"You have not breached any conditions, have not demonstrated any violent or aggressive behaviours, and appear to remain family focused," reads the March 28 decision.

"You recently also demonstrated some remorse and victim empathy after a discussion about an upcoming television series based on your crimes. You said the series is disrespectful to the victim and her family, and that index offence was so horrendous that it would re-victimize the victim's family."

The Hulu series, "Under the Bridge," starring Lily Gladstone and Riley Keough, has been generally well-received by critics, while leaving some who followed the news of Virk's killing 27 years ago – particularly those living in the Victoria area, where the 14-year-old was beaten and drowned – concerned about potentially sensationalizing the tragedy.

During Sim's trial, witnesses testified she told them she put her foot on Virk's head and smoked a cigarette while Virk lay in the water beneath the bridge where the attack by a group of teens took place.

Sim was initially granted day parole in 2017, and she received extended overnight leave privileges beginning in 2020 – but her parole was suspended the following year over incidents of domestic violence between Sim and her then-partner, who is the father of her two children.

She has since resumed day release, including overnight leave, and the Parole Board of Canada, in its March decision, decided to continue those privileges for another six months.

Her most recent psychological risk assessment, which was conducted in 2016, determined Sim would present "a moderate to high-moderate risk for future violence over the long term, and a relatively low risk over the short term," according to the documents.

"Your risk would be on the higher end should you abuse substances or associate with negative individuals," the decision adds.

Sim remains under several conditions during day parole, including that she abstain from drugs and alcohol, and avoid any "direct or indirect" contact with Virk's family.

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