Euroape Cities

Mass stabbing killer apologizes to victims in court, cites ‘enormous’ drug use | CBC News

A man who fatally stabbed a woman and injured several other people outside a library in North Vancouver, B.C., two years ago apologized to his victims at a sentencing hearing on Friday. 

Yannick Bandaogo’s lawyer said his client cannot explain a motive for the attack, but in his statement, the 30-year-old told the court of a troubled childhood that led him into drug use.

Bandaogo has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, several charges of attempted murder and one count of aggravated assault in relation to the March 2021 mass stabbing. 

Second-degree murder carries a mandatory life sentence, with a non-parole period of 10 to 25 years.

Crown and defence lawyers have jointly proposed that Bandaogo receive a sentence of life in prison with no chance of parole for 15 years, but Justice Geoffrey Gaul may still decide on a different term.

Bandaogo was arrested at the scene of the stabbings at the Lynn Valley public library on the afternoon of March 27, 2021.

A woman in her late 20s, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, was killed in the attacks.

The injured victims included a university student, a high school teacher and a single mother, ranging in age from 22 to 78 years old at the time.

Mother’s letter

In his apology, Bandaogo said he travelled to Vancouver via Toronto and Winnipeg before the attack, and the availability of crystal meth led to him consume an “enormous” amount of the drug, which he says “played a role” in his behaviour.

Before Bandaogo spoke, the court heard a letter written in French by his mother. 

In it, she said she often thinks about the victims and how they have suffered from a tragedy that should never have happened. 

A Black man is seen with an advocate in legal robes and another person in the defendant box in a court sketch.
Yannick Bandoago pictured in a court sketch. In May, he pleaded guilty to seven charges after a stabbing rampage in North Vancouver in March 2021. (Felicity Don)

She said the system failed her son, who had a long history of mental health and drug problems but was denied help.   

His condition deteriorated, she said, and he left Quebec without telling his family, who lost touch with him for about a year.

She thinks if her requests for help had been heard, the attack wouldn’t have happened and lives wouldn’t have been forever altered.

She said she was not trying to provide an excuse for what happened, but wanted to give the victims additional context. 

The sentencing hearing at B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster this week had previously heard impact statements from victims and their relatives. 

They included the mother of the woman who was killed, who said the death of her “gentle” and “fearless” daughter had shattered the family.

Sentencing is due to take place on Aug. 31. 

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button