Andrew Berry continues his testimony in Vancouver Law Courts Thursday. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Felicity Don)

B.C. man on trial for daughters’ murders says an intruder broke in

Andrew Berry takes stand in his defense for December 2017 deaths of young daughters

*Warning: This story contains disturbing content about suicide and violence.

The Victoria father charged with the double murder of his two young daughters took the stand for the second time on Thursday, giving his account of the events that occurred in his Oak Bay apartment on Dec. 25, 2017.

Andrew Berry, 45, is accused of murdering six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey – both found dead in his apartment on Christmas Day, 2017. He is the defense team’s first witness following months of Crown evidence and witnesses in the Vancouver Law Courts.

READ ALSO: Oak Bay father takes stand, denies killing young daughters

Under questions from defense lawyer Kevin McCullough, Berry described a snowy Christmas Eve with his daughters. He said on Dec. 24 they played in the snow with floaties and he kept them up until midnight, hoping that would keep them from waking up the next morning while it was still dark out – unable to pay his bills, Berry’s hydro had been turned off.

He testified that the next morning they received their Christmas gifts – unwrapped pencil crayons, pencil cases and little back packs – and had bowls of oatmeal for breakfast. Berry said they then went out to play in the snow again, taking the floaties to a golf course hill nearby. He claims they returned briefly at noon before heading straight out for more play time. He claims they had returned for lunch but that the girls weren’t hungry and didn’t eat anything before leaving again.

Berry said they returned again to the apartment roughly around 3:30 p.m.

“On the trip back home, how were the girls?” McCullough asked.

“They were good. Happy. They didn’t want to go back.” Berry’s face constricted, red with emotion.

He described getting back to his apartment, putting the girls’ snow toys in the hallway and taking off their wet clothes. The girls, wearing their pajamas went into the unit.

Berry said he entered his bedroom was tackled onto the bed before his throat was stabbed. He said he experienced “searing pain” through his body and described being confused when he came to.

“I just don’t know what to think,” he said. “I don’t know what’s happening.”

Berry told the courtroom that he then moved toward Chloe’s bedroom, where he fell down and lost consciousness in the doorway.

“When I wake up, I crawl over to Chloe’s bed and prop myself up onto my knees and I reach out and touch Chloe and she’s dead, and there’s blood everywhere,” he said between sobs. “There’s just blood everywhere.”

He said he checked his room for Aubrey and didn’t see her. He testified that he then moved to the kitchen where he grabbed a knife, was thrown to the ground and was stabbed when he tried to get back up.

He described his attacker as a man around his height with dark skin and dark hair. Berry said his attacker was not one of the men he knew to be associated with the loan shark he owed thousands of dollars to.

READ ALSO: Sister of Andrew Berry recalls urging brother to seek help

“The next memory I have is of waking up in the bathtub and the sounds of police over me,” he said, claiming there was a flashlight shining down on him and a gun pointed at his head. Berry said he heard voices saying: “This is the guy who killed his kids, this is the guy who killed his kids.”

Berry told the jury that his next memory was waking up in the hospital with tubes down his throat, handcuffed to the hospital bed, unaware of what day or time it was.

“How were you feeling at that point?” McCullough asked.

“Not good.”

“What about your mental state?”

“Not good. Just not good.”

Berry said the doctor told him he had to stay in the hospital, as mandated by the Mental Health Act.

“A doctor came into the room and explained that I was a risk of harming other people and myself and I wasn’t allowed to leave the hospital,” he told the court. “I wanted to die. There was nothing left. The girls were dead and I was chained to a bed. I just wanted to die.”

Asked about the hospital staff, Berry said he felt that everyone was sure of his guilt.

“Everybody thought I killed the girls. Everybody,” he said. “There wasn’t a soul who didn’t.”

Berry’s testimony continues Friday morning.

Read more on this story



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

andrew berryOak Bay double homicide

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

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Semi and BMW collide on South Surrey highway

At least one person to hospital, both vehicles sustained significant damage

Intent of killing at centre of Surrey man’s West Kelowna murder trial

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Allison Beames is anticipated to return with her decision in August

White Rock dogs-on-promenade survey shows majority approval

City figures suggest that off-season program could continue

UPDATE: Pedestrian dies after being hit by bus in uptown White Rock

Collision occurred July 3 at North Bluff Road and Johnston Road

VIDEO: Musqueam Chief captures captivating footage of bald eagle catching meal

‘This is why we have chosen to live here since time immemorial,’ Chief Wayne Sparrow’s nephew says

Police ramp up efforts to get impaired drivers off B.C. roads this summer

July is dedicated to the Summer CounterAttack Impaired Driving Campaign

Migrant workers stage multi-city action for full status amid COVID-19 risks

‘COVID-19 has exacerbated an existing crisis’

Okanagan school drops ‘Rebels’ sports team name, citing links with U.S. Civil War

Name and formerly-used images “fly in the face” of the district’s human rights policy, says board chair

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

Langley vigil demands justice for Ontario animal activist killed protesting slaughterhouse

More than two dozen people gathered at Britco Pork to remember Regan Russell, and fight Bill 156

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Stop enforcing sex work laws during COVID-19, advocates say

There are provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws that make workers immune from prosecution, but not from arrest

Liberal party finished 2019 having spent $43 million, raised $42 million

All political parties had until midnight June 30 to submit their financial reports for last year

Most Read