Family and friends of Tania Cowell packed a Hamilton court room Tuesday for the sentencing of her killer Haiden Suarez Noa.
Last month Noa was found guilty of second degree murder; he had pleaded to manslaughter but a jury decided he did know what he was doing when he stabbed his girlfriend eleven times in front of their five-month old son.
Tania’s sister in law, Julie Cowell told the court that Tania was robbed of her beautiful qualities and her voice when she was killed and then disparaged in court.
On March 9, 2013, Tania Cowell was home with her baby Bailun. She had been fighting over text message with Bailun’s father Suarez Noa and eventually asked him to come home. A few hours after he did, she was dead, stabbed 11 times with a kitchen knife. Suarez Noa took a picture of her body and left with the baby who was spattered with his mother’s blood. He turned himself in to police 12 hours later.
Because Tania was killed at home in front of her son, the prosecutor argued that the murder was more horrific than if she had been killed by a stranger.
“You’re in a relationship with someone you feel you’re safe. People argue, everybody argues. You don’t think your partner is going to kill you. It’s a lot worse because she trusted that Haiden would not harm her.”
Charn Gill, Suarez Noa’s lawyer, suggested his client should serve 10-12 years before he’s eligible for parole. Suarez Noa will likely be deported back to Cuba after his eventual release.
The crown argued for at least 17 or 18 years, although that’s more than the usual 12 to 17 years for domestic murder cases.
After all the submissions Justice Andrew Goodman said he wasn’t ready to make a decision, so court will reconvene on Thursday morning to find out how long Suarez Noa has to spend in prison before he’s eligible for parole.