Seven-year-old Aaliyah Rosa was found dead in an apartment in Langley in July. File photo

Seven-year-old Aaliyah Rosa was found dead in an apartment in Langley in July. File photo

Trial of B.C. woman accused of daughter’s killing scheduled for 2020

Kerryann Lewis faces a first degree murder charge

It will be more than a year before the trial begins for a woman charged with the death of her seven-year-old daughter in Langley.

Kerryann Lewis had a pre-trial court appearance Tuesday in New Wesminster Supreme Court, one of the last appearances she will make before her trial next year.

Aaliyah Isabella Rosa, seven, was found dead in a Willoughby Slope condo on July 22 last year.

Crown attorneys are now proceeding with a direct indictment, said Alisia Adams of the BC Prosecution Service. A direct indictment allows the courts to skip a preliminary inquiry and proceed directly to trial.

However, the trial will still not be held for more than a year.

Lewis is scheduled to be back in New Westminster Supreme Court on Sept. 26 for a case management conference, but her trial won’t start until Oct. 5, 2020.

Adams said the scheduling is apparently based on the availability of Lewis’s defence lawyer.

In January, the BC Prosecution Service announced that the charge against Lewis had been upgraded to first-degree murder.

The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) began looking into the case immediately after the discovery of Rosa’s death, and Lewis was charged with second degree murder on Aug. 17, 2018.

She had been under medical care in the weeks between her daughter’s death and the announcement of the murder charge.

First-degree murder is considered a planned and deliberate crime. While those convicted of second-degree murder are automatically sentenced to life in prison, judges may set different dates on when they are eligible to be considered for parole.

Those convicted of first-degree murder must serve 25 years minimum before being considered for release.

Rosa was laid to rest on Aug. 7 last year, in a funeral where she was dubbed a “once-in-a-lifetime friend” and a daughter who loved her father, Steve Rosa.

READ MORE: Tree of life to be planted in memory of Aaliyah Rosa

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