The fourth and final man charged in the 2008 deaths of a Mission couple was sentenced on Friday to 10 years behind bars.
A judge in New Westminster handed Thomas Holden the decade-long sentence for conspiracy to commit murder – minus 145 days for time already served. That’s the sentence both his lawyer and Crown counsel had asked for during an earlier sentencing hearing.
Lisa Dudley, 37, and Guthrie McKay, 33 were shot in a home on Greenwood Drive in rural Mission on Sept. 18, 2008. A neighbour found them four days later.
McKay was pronounced dead at the scene after suffering from three gunshots, while Dudley, who had been shot once in the head and one in the neck, was still alive. She was airlifted to hospital where she later died.
Lisa Dudley's mom says Holden, who never asked for forgiveness does not get any. Calls him an "incredible coward." pic.twitter.com/pR5nm3n67X
— Ashley Wadhwani (@ashwadhwani) February 10, 2017
Woodruff is serving two life sentences with no chance of parole.
Former Mission RCMP officer Cpl. Mike White was reprimanded and docked one day’s pay in 2011 for failing to properly investigate a shots fired call at the Greenwood Drive home.
A man had reported hearing six gun shots and a crashing noise the night of the shooting. White reported to the Greenwood home, but left the scene after being there for about 10 minutes and did not follow up the next day.
In court today (Friday, Feb. 10) in front of a packed courtroom filled with McKay and Dudley’s families, Justice Arnold-Bailey described Holden’s actions in organizing both murders as one of the most “despicable crimes imaginable.”
Prior to this sentencing, Holden who’s married and has two children, had no criminal record.
“While what he did is not offered as a defense or even a justification, it is submitted that Mr. Holden endorsed the unlawful path that led to the deaths of Dudley and McKay, without sufficient thought and attention to alternative means of solving the difficult and highly charged situation that had arisen,” Arnold-Bailey said.
Outside court Friday, McKay’s parents, while holding a photo of him, told reporters that it felt like justice hadn’t been served and that the sentence should have been longer.
“Nobody has won, and everyone has lost so much,” his mom, Dorothy McKay, said.
Dudley’s family was also upset with the length of sentencing.
Mark Surakka, while standing behind Dudley’s mother Rosemarie, questioned why Woodruff - the man who committed the murders – was sentenced for three times longer than the one who conspired and initiated the killings.
“The judge was well within her rights to sentence him to a longer sentence, she didn’t,” he said, adding the sentence length won’t deter others from committing such acts.
During Friday’s sentencing hearing, Holden did not make a statement.
“He has not apologized, or showed remorse, or acknowledged the terrifying, desperate way in which Lisa spent the last four days in the last summer of her life,” Rosemarie said.
“The victim here was my baby girl, who Tom murdered as sure as if he had done so with his own filthy hands.”
“He’s asked no forgiveness from me, so he gets none.”