BC looking to prevent serious offenders from changing their names after child killer did just that

The legislation comes just weeks after Opposition BC United leader Kevin Falcon put forward a private member's bill to change the act after Allen Schoenborn, a child murderer, was permitted to legally change his name.

BC looking to prevent serious offenders from changing their names after child killer did just that
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On Monday, legislation was introduced in British Columbia prohibiting individuals convicted of serious Criminal Code offences from legally changing their names.

The proposed law would update the province's Name Act, which would ensure that those convicted of dangerous offences cannot rename themselves, said BC Health Minister Adrian Dix.

The legislation comes just weeks after Opposition BC United leader Kevin Falcon put forward a private member's bill to change the act after Allen Schoenborn, a child murderer, was permitted to legally change his name.

Schoenborn's new identity was made public on Monday, after he changed his name to Ken John Johnson.

"What this legislation does is it says that people who have been found guilty of very serious offences — violence against other people, acts against children — will not be permitted to change their name," said Health Minister Adrian Dix following introduction of the bill in the legislature.

"The focus here is the offence and not the verdict," he said, reports CBC. "What it ensures really is more safety and reflects the views of families who are facing these circumstances."

Schoenborn was found responsible for three counts of first-degree murder after he killed his own children, ages five, eight and 10 in 2008.

Schoenborn was found not criminally responsible for the acts due to a mental disorder.

A spokesperson for the family said that he received confirmation that Schoenborn changed his name to Ken John Johnson in 2021.

"I wanted to share it because I don't think someone who murdered three children should be able to hide under a new name," he said in an interview. "It doesn't mean they can divorce themselves from what they did."

Falcon, in response to the name change, called it "not acceptable."

"This is a huge problem for the safety of communities," he said at a news conference in April.

"When government balances competing interests, I put the interests of community safety well above the interest of Allan Schoenborn to have his name changed so that he can move around the community unnoticed."

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