Man who orchestrated Mission murders gets day parole after serving less than three years

Victims’ parents express grief, outrage over parole board decision

The man who was convicted of organizing the murder of Mission’s Lisa Dudley and Guthrie McKay is out on day parole after serving less than three years of a 10-year sentence.

It’s shocking news to the parents of the victims.

Dorothy McKay said the fact that one of her son’s killers was out on parole has brought up some powerful emotions.

“I’m deeply sickened that the parole is happening so soon,” she said.

READ MORE: Final man gets 10 years in 2008 killing of Mission couple

Thomas Robert Holden, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit murder in connection with the deaths of Lisa Dudley, 37, and Guthrie McKay, 33, who 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 once in the neck, was still alive. She was airlifted to hospital where she later died.

Four men were eventually charged: Jack Woodruff, Justin MacKinnon, Bruce Main and Holden.

Holden was sentenced in February 2017, in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster, after admitting his involvement in both deaths. He became eligible for day release on Oct. 3.

Dorothy McKay said the fact that Holden has been granted day parole after such a short time “trivializes two people’s lives.”

“I can’t express the deep profound loss this has been for our lives, of losing our son. We’ve been kind of quiet all through this. It’s been very painful and we needed to do some healing. This resurfacing again just opens it all up. It’s very hard on the family,” she said adding her son was a “lover of life.”

READ MORE: Parents want belongings returned

Lisa Dudley’s step-father Mark Surakka expressed similar feelings of despair and anger.

“When Rosemarie (Dudley’s mother) got the call that he was asking for it (day parole) and then a week or so later she got a call that he had received it, that was a pretty hard slap in the face for her.”

He said the decision devalues human life.

“How is it possible for someone who orchestrates a double murder, directs it and then gets off. What kind of message does that send to society? Is that a deterrent?

“It’s a year and four months per murder,” said Surakka.

While the decision was devastating, Surakka said he was not surprised or shocked.

“People keep blaming it on the system, but it isn’t. It’s the individuals in the system, the judge, the parole board, they are the people responsible for the decisions.”

What makes it even worse, according to Surakka is that Holden will be eligible for full parole in March 2020.



kevin.mills@missioncityrecord.com

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

Influx of cross-border visitors to Peace Arch Park sparks concern COVID-19 could spike

Police, parks officials say patrols, education and signage have all been increased

North Delta crime beat, week of May 17

A selection of property crimes submitted weekly by the Delta Police Department

COLUMN: For real leadership amid crisis, look west of Scott Road

Delta council, under direction of Mayor George Harvie, defines leadership during pandemic

UPDATE: Funding announced for pair of North Delta salmon conservation projects

Grants for Cougar Creek-related works by Burns Bog Conservation Society, Cougar Creek Streamkeepers

Delta playgrounds, basketball hoops, reopening June 1

Skate and bike parks in the city were reopened last week

Only four new COVID-19 cases, 228 active across B.C.

Health officials watching as activities ramp up

Feds looking at ways to reunite families amid COVID-19 border restrictions with U.S.

Some families with members of dual-citizenship have become separated due to the pandemic

Condition in kids with possible COVID-19 link being studied in Canada

This month, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an alert to doctors about MIS-C

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Importance of accurate, ethical reporting more critical than ever

COVID cancelled their wedding plans, so they married on a BC mountaintop

Ceremony was live streamed to friends and family around the world

Trudeau acknowledges racial unrest in U.S.; ‘We also have work to do in Canada’

‘Anti-black racism, racism, is real; it’s in the United States, but it’s also in Canada,’ Trudeau says

State of Local Emergency declared for Boundary as communities brace for river flooding

Warm weather and heavy rain could cause sections of Kettle River system to swell beyond 2018 levels

Large cruise ships barred from Canadian waters until end of October: Garneau

Last year 140 cruise ships brought more than two million visitors to Canadian ports

Most Read