Jonathan Rosenthal sentenced for homicide of Crystal McFadyen in failed home hearth cover-up – Saskatoon

WARNING: This story contains content that some readers may find disturbing.

Crystal McFadyen isn’t defined by the terrible discovery of her body after a house fire three years ago, her father said on the steps of a Saskatoon courthouse.

Rather, she will be remembered because she lived life as a “total human being” who brought joy to everyone she knew. The 37-year-old was a passionate drummer with the North Saskatchewan Regiment and often raised donations for charity. She loved traveling, friends, family and rescue dogs.

She couldn’t wait to become a mother. She was eight months pregnant when she was murdered in early July 2018. Their unborn daughter did not survive.

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Jonathan Rosenthal, 41, pleaded guilty to a second degree murder Monday. He was the child’s father. Canadian law prevents a person from being charged with the death of an unborn child.

“Not only did he murder my daughter, he also murdered his own. I don’t know how to live with that, ”said Myron Louis, Crystal’s father.

Judge Gerald Allbright accepted a joint submission from the Crown and Defense and sentenced Rosenthal to life imprisonment with no parole for 15 years.

Jonathan Rosenthal pleaded guilty to the second degree murder on Monday.


An autopsy revealed that Crystal was dead before Rosenthal doused her house on Avenue F North with gasoline and set it on fire on July 6, 2018. Her cause of death was recorded as excessive blood loss due to a deep slashing of the neck.

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The court heard that Rosenthal stayed with Crystal on weekends while he stayed with his wife during the week. The Crown Prosecutor, Carla Dewar, told the court that Rosenthal had invented “fabricating incredulous stories,” including plans to move the victim to Lloydminster. He showed her pictures of a house that he supposedly bought for her.

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On another occasion, he claimed that he and his wife would take care of the baby after Crystal was born.

Crystal’s family were concerned about the woman’s whereabouts, saying that after months of being aloof, she had not communicated with them at all. Rosenthal lied to the police, claiming that she was visiting a friend in Regina.

“It is an unusual case full of lies, deception and ultimately violence,” said Dewar.

Rosenthal initially denied any involvement in Crystal’s death and referred the Saskatoon police to another suspect. He told officials that blood on his shoes was due to his work as a butcher. DNA proved it was Crystal.

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On July 5, Rosenthal used Crystals’ phone to text her parents saying she was fine and that they wanted her to cancel the missing person report.

“The tone of the news was getting angrier,” Dewar said in court. “Very characterless.”

Rosenthal also disposed of evidence and used Crystal’s bank card after her death.

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When Rosenthal was confronted by the police with the evidence against him, he eventually admitted that he had killed Crystal. He said Crystal stated the baby was not his and an argument broke out, although there is no evidence to support his claim.

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Defense attorney Carson Demmans said this was not an excuse for Rosenthal’s actions, but his client was an alcoholic who had been prescribed drugs for anxiety and depression and he might have used methamphetamine before the killing.

He had no criminal record before Crystal’s death.

“This is not a person who is a professional criminal and has been hardened by the criminal justice system,” Demmans said.

In delivering the verdict, Judge Allbright said Rosenthal used “groundless violence” followed by an attempt to cover up evidence.

“You have tried to weave a web of deception – an extensive web of deception.”

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Murder charges filed after a pregnant woman’s body was found in an apartment fire

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