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Chilliwack man who shot and killed his intimate partner apologizes at sentencing hearing

‘I realize the void in their life and the life that is lost and I’ll take any justice you give me’
Christine Denham was killed in a house in downtown Chilliwack on Feb. 26, 2019. Shane Travis Hughes pleaded guilty to manslaughter in BC Supreme Court on Sept. 7, 2022. (Submitted)

The man who killed Christine Denham in the house the two lived in together in 2019 addressed the court at his sentencing hearing in B.C. Supreme Court in Abbotsford on Friday.

Shane Travis Hughes shot Denham in the stomach with a shotgun in their home in 2019.

He pleaded guilty to manslaughter in September 2022. His sentencing hearing wrapped up Friday.

“I would like to take responsibility for my actions that led up to her death, the impact that it had for her children, for her family, for her community,” Hughes told the court.

”I take full responsibility. I realize the void in their life and the life that is lost and I’ll take any justice you give me.”

Denham and Hughes were living together in a house on Victor Street in Chilliwack in a tumultuous, drug-filled lifestyle, when Hughes shot her on Feb. 26, 2019 during a minor argument.

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The two were living in a house in “complete disarray” filled with drug paraphernalia, according to an agreed statement of facts.

He entered the living room with the gun, Denham tried to take it away from him, and she was shot in the abdomen. Hughes then fled the residence, gave the gun to a friend who was waiting with a car. He went back in, dialed 911 and gave the phone to Denham before leaving.

She was taken off life support on Feb. 28, 2019.

Hughes’ sentencing hearing began on Thursday (Feb. 9, 2023) with submissions from Crown counsel, who asked for a sentence of six years jail. It ended on Friday.

Defence counsel Rob Dhanu asked the court for a sentence of three-to-four years.

Hughes is being given credit for 28 months time served, but because of the strict release conditions, he is also asking for credit for the time he spent under house arrest. Crown opposed this.

After Crown’s sentencing submissions, which included victim impact statements from Denham’s children and ex-husband, Dhanu said reading the statements a day earlier was very emotional for Hughes.

Justice Janet Winteringham told the parties she would make a decision at a later date. That date was scheduled for March 1.

“This is one of those cases that does require some reflection,” Winteringham said.

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