Bowness murder linked to disturbing trend in Calgary

A disturbing city trend of domestic violence may be the underlying cause of Calgary’s 29th homicide of the year.


Police responded to a ‘check the welfare’ call in a Bowness home on Sunday and found the body of 43-year-old Shelley Maclaren. She died from strangulation and police arrested her 46-year-old husband Craig Maclaren.


If it is proven that her husband killed her, Maclaren will be the eighth victim in a series of domestic homicides in 2007.


Alberta has the highest domestic violence rate in Canada, according to a local domestic abuse agency.

Tatiana Tomljanovic, communications co-ordinator for Alliance to End Violence, told Metro that Alberta has an alarmingly high rate of domestic and spousal abuse, and Calgary is a major contributor to the statistics.

“As far as I am concerned, one domestic abuse related death is too many. And we’re at 8 already this year, which is a lot. It’s disheartening that we have that many,” she said.

“It’s not just a women’s issue, which is the old fashioned way of thinking and stigmatization. This is something that affects the whole community and we need to make the public aware of the issue.”

According to Staff Sgt. Rosemary Hawkins of the CPS domestic conflict team, cops respond to more than 13,000 domestic violence-related calls per year.

“Alberta does have the highest rate of domestic abuse numbers but we attribute that to the number of people reporting it and our broad definition of domestic abuse,” she said.

Hawkins also confirmed police have been to the home of the deceased in the past.


  • Craig Maclaren faces charges of second-degree murder and will make an appearance in court on December 14th.