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Sask. sisters face long wait for bail decision

Odelia and Nerissa Quewezance say they were wrongfully convicted in 1994 of the murder of 70-year-old Joseph Dolff of Kamsack.

YORKTON – Two sisters who say they were wrongfully convicted in 1994 of the murder of 70-year-old Joseph Dolff of Kamsack will have to wait a little longer to find out their fate.

On Thursday, a judge at Yorkton Court of King’s Bench reserved his decision until March 27 on whether sisters Odelia and Nerissa Quewezance will be released on bail.

The Saulteaux sisters had a bail hearing in January. After the hearing Justice Donald Layh adjourned his decision a month. Then, on Feb. 23 he adjourned his decision for another month, until March 27.

The sisters have maintained their innocence since they were convicted in 1994 of second-degree murder in the 1993 death of Kamsack-area farmer Anthony Joseph Dolff. The sisters' cousin – who was a youth at the time - has repeatedly admitted that he is the one who killed Dolff and not the sisters. He was sentenced to only four years in prison and the sisters were sentenced to life in prison.

Coinciding with the bail hearing in Yorkton In January, Dan Godbersen, Executive Director of Michel Callihou Nation Society, was at the Leg in support of Odelia and Nerissa Quewezance. He was hoping to meet with Minister of Justice and Attorney General Bronwyn Eyre and present a petition calling for their release. 

The sisters' convictions are currently under review by the federal justice department as a possible miscarriage of justice.

In November 2022 during Question Period in the Saskatchewan legislature when asked if she supported the federal review of the Quewezance matter, Minister Eyre replied “we are aware that there’s a federal review currently under way in this case, Mr. Speaker, and we must let that take its course. Of course, these convictions were upheld at the Court of Appeal. The Supreme Court decided not to hear the case. And it would be inappropriate for me, Mr. Speaker, to comment further.”

Nerissa and Odelia have the support of high-profile advocates such as Senator Kim Pate, Innocence Canada, Kim Beaudin from Congress of Aboriginal Peoples, the late David Milgaard and retired judges Justices Harry LaForme and Juanita Westmoreland-Traore – who were appointed by federal justice minister David Lametti to head the creation of an independent Criminal Case Review Commission to review wrongful convictions.

Correctional Service of Canada has tentatively scheduled a parole hearing for Nerissa Quewezance in May.

With files from John Cairns and Ryan Kiedrowski

Email Lisa Joy at

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