Robbery spree adds eight years to escaped killer’s sentence

Shawn Merrick was found hiding on roof of Murrayville home in 2015 after he broke out of prison and robbed several banks

Shawn Merrick

A convicted murderer, who escaped prison and evaded police while going on a bank robbing spree in the spring of 2015, has been sentenced.

On Monday, Shawn Merrick, 44, was sentenced to six years in jail for six counts of robbery. He was also sentenced to two years prison for escaping legal custody and being unlawfully at large. He is serving the sentences consecutively.

Merrick is already serving a life sentence for the second-degree murder of Surrey’s Shelley Lynn DeVoe in 2006. Her body was found on a road in Coquitlam. In 2007, when he was convicted of the murder, he was also sentenced for a string of bank robberies that spanned from North Vancouver to Langley. He was arrested at a friend’s house in Aldergrove.

Merrick escaped the Mission minimum security prison on March 31, 2015. The first bank robbery occurred in Surrey on Fraser Highway. It was a failed attempt, however, he was successful at another bank down the street.

He then set his sights on Langley, where he successfully robbed four banks, including in Aldergrove.

The Canadian Bankers Association offered a $10,000 reward that would lead to Merrick’s arrest and conviction.

His adventures on the lam came to an end May 5, 2015 when police were tipped off that he was hiding on the roof of a house in Murrayville.

That was where he was arrested in dramatic fashion, with several branches of law enforcement out to make sure they caught the slippery fugitive. He was transported back to prison.

Merrick, a drug addict since he was a teenager, had 50 criminal convictions against him by the age of 34, including numerous bank robberies.