Wanda Campbell at the courthouse in Nanaimo on Monday. Campbell is mother of Andrew McLean, who was shot and killed at the Howard Johnson Hotel in Nanaimo in April 2017. Brandon Tyler Woody, who pleaded guilty to her son’s murder, is in court for his sentencing hearing this week. (CHRIS BUSH/News Bulletin)

Defence says man committed fatal hotel shooting in Nanaimo to protect wife

Brandon Tyler Woody set to learn fate in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo on Wednesday

The man that pleaded guilty to second-degree murder after a fatal shooting at a Nanaimo hotel in 2017 broke the law because he feared for his wife’s safety, says his lawyer.

Brandon Tyler Woody, 30 at the time of the April 19, 2017 incident, was initially charged with first-degree murder, but pleaded guilty to the lesser charge in February. Sentencing began Monday in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo.

Woody claimed, according to Crown, that he had turned down money for the killing initially, but the people who ordered the killing “didn’t take no for an answer” and saying no again would mean they would go after his wife.

Paul McMurray, Woody’s legal counsel, told Riley on Tuesday that Woody was concerned about the safety of his wife and the threats that had been posed. The statement of facts referenced a “burner phone” being used by someone apparently giving directions to Woody, and citing cellphone records, McMurray said the phone, activated on April 18, 2017, was in the Esquimalt area, which was an eight-minute drive from Woody’s house.

McMurray said Woody wasn’t trying to hide and was heading home to his wife, “the person he was trying to protect and the reason, he says, he did this.” He told police during an interview that he was only concerned about the safety of one person, said McMurray, which was his wife. The criminals had more resources to get at Woody’s wife than the RCMP had to protect, said McMurray.

In response, Frank Dubenski, Crown counsel, said there was nothing in text messages from the burner cellphone suggesting any evidence of threat, nor was there anything from witnesses to confirm the existence of threat and there was no evidence from his spouse that Woody alerted her to a threat.

Security camera footage at the now-closed Howard Johnson Harbourside Hotel showed Andrew McLean, 34 when he died, being shot and killed.

In the video, a man wearing a black mask, walked up to a man, identified as McLean, and fired two shots into his back with a handgun. After McLean fell, the gun was place in close proximity to the victim’s head and he was shot twice more.

Dubenski told Judge Paul Riley on Monday that the attack was “a brutal, shocking and chilling account of an execution killing carried out with remarkable precision.”

RELATED: Sentencing begins in hotel murder case

RELATED: Man arrested in hotel shooting pleads guilty

RELATED: Charges laid in Nanaimo shooting

RELATED: Shooting in Nanaimo leaves one dead

Riley is set to render his decision tomorrow, Wednesday, March 27.

– With files from Chris Bush


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: Community generosity helps Courtenay Elementary school replace stolen bikes

Community compassion, coupled with school connections, helped Courtenay Elementary restock its inventory… Continue reading

Comox Valley gives back

Comox Valley businesses, organizations and individuals helping improve the lives of others

Comox Valley playgrounds, outdoor fitness stations now open

School District 71 and Comox Valley local governments have reopened outdoor playgrounds… Continue reading

City of Courtenay outlines changes to property tax payment options due to COVID-19

Courtenay property tax notices were mailed on May 27-28, and will be… Continue reading

VIDEO: A Vancouver Island black bear takes weekend nap in eagle tree

Videos captured by Terry Eissfeldt shows the bear arriving Saturday night and sleeping in on Sunday

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Summer tubing ban on Cowichan River lifted

The Tube Shack opening on June 27

North Island College students printing safety gear

Industrial automation students use program smarts to help others

NDP getting COVID-19 wage subsidy ‘indirectly,’ B.C. Liberal leader says

B.C. NDP says Andrew Wilkinson is wrong about federal link

Parent, superintendent, trustee report smooth return to classrooms in B.C.

The biggest challenge is convincing families that it’s safe, some say

Most Read