Partner charged with second-degree murder in slaying of Quebec mother of six


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A camera operator films the scene outside a home in Mascouche, Que., Thursday, Jan.16, 2020. Quebec provincial police are investigating the killing of a woman in her 30s inside a home in Mascouche. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

A camera operator films the scene outside a home in Mascouche, Que., Thursday, Jan.16, 2020. Quebec provincial police are investigating the killing of a woman in her 30s inside a home in Mascouche. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

MONTREAL – A Quebec man was charged Friday in the slaying of his wife while their six children were present in their home.

Benoit Cardinal, 33, was charged with second-degree murder in the killing of Jael Cantin and remains detained with conditions not to contact his children or a number of other witnesses in the case.

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Cardinal appeared to limp as he was captured by TV cameras entering the courthouse in Joliette, about 75 kilometres north of Montreal.

Cantin, 33, of Mascouche, Que., was found badly injured in the home the couple shared in the suburb about 45 kilometres north of Montreal.

Cardinal recently left his job at a youth centre in Laval, Que.

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The regional health board in the area said in a statement Friday that at the end of December they were made aware of “inappropriate behaviour” by a staffer and launched an investigation.

Cardinal was suspended after the allegations and resigned last Friday.

The health board said it offered Cardinal psychological support.

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In the aftermath of the slaying, the board has set up a support system for employees, users and their families and is collaborating with various groups for investigative purposes.

Police have remained tight-lipped about what might have happened in the residence on des Anglais Road.

At about 4 a.m., authorities received a 911 call and found an injured man and woman in the home as well as several young children.

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Both Cantin and Cardinal were transported to hospital, where Cantin was pronounced dead.

Cardinal was treated for unspecified injuries and was questioned by detectives before being placed under arrest on Thursday evening.

The children are now in the care of the Cantin’s family.

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Cardinal is scheduled to return to court on Feb. 26.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 17, 2020.

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