Three men have pleaded guilty to second degree murder for killing 19-year-old Nicholas Hannon of Langley in 2014.
Bradley Michael Flaherty, Keith William Tankard, and Connor Angus Campbell were originally charged with first-degree murder.
Hannon was last seen by his younger brother at their Walnut Grove home on the evening of Feb. 26, 2014.
The next day, his abandoned vehicle was found in the 10400 block of McKinnon Crescent, at Derby Reach Park.
At the time, RCMP called his disappearance suspicious and Hannon’s family offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to his safe return.
Despite his father Craig’s emotional public pleas to bring his son home, as well as hiring a private searcher with blood hounds, Hannon’s disappearance remained a mystery for more than a year and half.
Then the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team called a press conference to announce they had made three arrests and recovered Hannon’s body.
IHIT Sgt. Jennifer Pound said the body of the missing teen was discovered in a heavily wooded area near Mission. Police were able to recover his body after the three men were arrested.
Sgt. Pound said the three accused were friends of Hannon.
Investigators believe Hannon died as a result of a conflict that “turned violent, and ultimately deadly,” Pound said at the time.
Crown is satisfied with the guilty pleas which will save the family the trauma of a lengthy trial.
“In the view of the Crown, it is a sentence that reflects the gravity of the offence, denounces the unlawful conduct and tragic consequences of the actions of the three accused while recognizing the youth of the accused, their lack of criminal history and their acceptance of responsibility through their guilty plea,” said Dan McLaughlin, communications counsel for the Criminal Justice Branch.
“Additionally the resolution ensures certainty and finality regarding the process. There will be no lengthy trial, which would have taken approximately nine months, no uncertainty as to outcome and no appeal,” McLaughlin said.
“Finally the family and witnesses are spared the challenges and potential trauma of what would have been a long and arduous trial and possible appeal.”