Indigenous Man Receives 5 1/2 Year Sentence for Involvement in Calgary Stabbing

Calgary, Alberta – A Siksika man has been sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison for his involvement in a brutal stabbing that left a Calgary woman covered in blood. Justice Mark Tyndale acknowledged the tragic Indigenous background of Troy Eagle Tail Feathers, which led to a more lenient sentence. However, the judge also noted the aggravating factor that the victim was a vulnerable Indigenous woman.

Tyndale highlighted the tension between two sections of the Criminal Code in cases where both the offender and victim are Indigenous. Despite considering Eagle Tail Feathers’ upbringing, which was marked by abuse and hardship, the judge found multiple aggravating factors to justify a sentence higher than the defense proposed.

The judge convicted Eagle Tail Feathers of aggravated assault, kidnapping, and driving while disqualified for his involvement in an attack on Colynda Beardy. With credit for pre-sentencing custody, Eagle Tail Feathers will serve an additional 31 months. His sister, Patricia Eagle Tail Feathers, who pleaded guilty to her role in the attack, is awaiting sentencing.

The sentencing court took into account the historical background of colonialism, displacement, and residential schools that continue to impact Indigenous peoples. Tyndale emphasized the high moral culpability of Eagle Tail Feathers for actively participating in the serious offenses of aggravated assault and kidnapping.

In rejecting Eagle Tail Feathers’ claims of innocence, the judge noted his evasiveness and contradictions in his testimony. This case sheds light on the complex interplay between Indigenous heritage, the justice system, and the impact of historical traumas on individuals and communities. The sentencing reflects the ongoing disparities faced by Indigenous peoples in Canada’s legal system.

Overall, the case underscores the need for a nuanced approach to sentencing that considers the unique circumstances of both the offender and victim in Indigenous communities. Moving forward, it is crucial to address the underlying systemic issues that contribute to such incidents and work towards a more just and equitable justice system for all individuals, regardless of background.