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Landlord sentenced for attack on Abbotsford family

Brian and Korinne Tjepkema, with their kids Koby and Mercy, are relieved that a court case involving their former landlord is now over. - John Morrow file photo
Brian and Korinne Tjepkema, with their kids Koby and Mercy, are relieved that a court case involving their former landlord is now over.
— image credit: John Morrow file photo

The dad of a family of four who were terrorized by their landlord last fall said he is satisfied with the 18-month prison sentence handed out Tuesday, although he is disappointed the man has shown no remorse.

Paramjeet Jandu, 42, was convicted in Abbotsford provincial court of mischief, uttering threats and arson in relation to his attack against the Tjepkema family on Oct. 13, 2010. He has been in prison since his arrest that day.

Brian said Jandu refused to take part in psychiatric evaluations that were ordered, and has shown no remorse for the crimes he committed. However, the family is happy the case has concluded.

"We're at the point now where we feel like we can move on," Brian said.

He said he is particularly pleased with the lifetime firearms prohibition given to Jandu which the judge based, in part, on recordings of the incident in which the Tjepkema children – then aged three and five – could be heard screaming in terror.

No gun was used in the incident, but Jandu's potential for violence warranted such a ban, the judge determined.

"The judge said he still finds it disturbing to hear the kids in the background (of the tape)," Brian said.

He said those recordings were crucial evidence in the case. They were taken from a tape that Brian made after turning on his video camera when Jandu began his attack.

Jandu lived in the basement suite of the Abbotsford home he owned, while the Tjepkemas – mom Korinne, dad Brian and their son Koby and daughter Mercy – rented the upstairs.

On the day in question, Jandu  began swearing, yelling and banging around the basement suite, and could be heard threatening to set the house on fire.

Jandu then took a hammer to the basement door, which led to the upper portion of the house and was locked from the Tjepkemas' side. When the heavy door wouldn't budge, he proceeded outside and to the front of the  house.

He threw the hammer against the glass beside the door, yelled at Brian, who was at the top of the stairs, and ran back to his suite, where he made more commotion.

Police who were called to the scene found Jandu sitting on the front lawn. They discovered he had pulled cooking oil over the entire kitchen of his suite and had turned on all four burners on the electric stove.

The couple believed Jandu's actions were aimed at getting them to move so he could raise the rent, which he couldn't legally do because they had only lived in the home for a few months.

The couple moved immediately after the incident, but Brian said they are still traumatized by what happened.

His son and daughter share a room because they are afraid to sleep alone, and they panic if Brian or Korinne is out of their sight.

Further adding to their distress was the break-in of their new residence over the Christmas holidays, when thieves stole a range of items, including electronics, gift cards, clothing, food and jewelry.

The theft resulted in the formation of a Facebook page, called Fight the Grinch, to help the family replace their stolen items. Brian said his family was touched by the overwhelming response.

"I actually had to tell people, 'We have enough. Give it to other people who need it.'"

Now, Brian said they are looking forward to a better year ahead.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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