Glen Race's mother Donna speaks at a press conference as her husband, Mark, and son Doug listen at lawyer Joel Pink's office yesterday.

Donna Race’s biggest fear was losing her son, Glen.

“And in the end I did lose him through the mental illness and the crime,” she said

The family of Glen Race, who is facing murder charges for the deaths of two Nova Scotia men, held a press conference in their lawyer’s office yesterday.

Glen first started showing signs of a mental illness in his second year of university, Donna said, and he was diagnosed with schizophrenia soon after. He was admitted to mental health institutions but he escaped several times. There was no law in effect at the time to allow the parents to further institutionalize their son.

Doug Race said he knows what led to his brother’s break in May 2007, but wouldn’t talk about it yesterday because of the court proceedings. Glen wasn’t on medication at the time, said the family.

“I believe he became so psychotic and so severely ill, I would call it his monster overpowered him and he couldn’t fight it anymore,” said Donna.

Glen, 29, is charged with the deaths of Michael Paul Knott, 44, of Timberlea and Trevor Charles Brewster, 45, of Cole Harbour as well as the shooting death of Darcy Manor in upstate New York in May 2007.

He was sentenced to life in prison in the U.S. in 2009 before he was extradited to Canada last year.

Mark Race said he hopes his son will be found not criminally responsible for the deaths of Brewster and Knott. They’re also looking at appealing the American conviction.

The family said mental health needs more awareness and the system desperately needs funding.

Family doesn’t want Race sent back to U.S.
Glen Race’s family wants him to stay in Canada.

“We would love as a family that Glen would stay here for sure,” said his father, Mark Race. “He’s a Canadian citizen and his actions will come out that he wasn’t sane at that particular time.”

But according to the extradition agreement, Glen has to return to the U.S. to complete his life sentence before returning to Canada to face any sentence here.

The family’s lawyer, Joel Pink, said he’s waiting on advice to see if he’ll launch a constitutional challenge.

“We have been told by American lawyers it will be very difficult because he’s been convicted of a federal offence and he’s doing a mandatory life imprisonment,” he said.

Glen’s brother Doug Race said they’re looking at appealing the American conviction because an insane defence was never used. “In our opinion, my brother’s attorney at the time made a critical error in not putting forward the defence,” he said. “Getting him another trial in the U.S.A. is the just thing to have done here.”

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