Andrew Berry has been found guilty on two counts of second-degree murder. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Felicity Don)

Andrew Berry has been found guilty on two counts of second-degree murder. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Felicity Don)

Oak Bay Mayor hopes guilty verdict brings closure to family, friends of Aubrey and Chloe

Andrew Berry found guilty of second-degree murder of his two daughters

In a courtroom in the Supreme Court of British Columbia, a 12-person jury declared Andrew Berry guilty on both counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of his two daughters.

Aubrey, 4, and Chloe, 6, were found murdered in their father’s Oak Bay apartment on Christmas Day in 2017. Berry was found naked and injured in his bathtub.

Kevin Murdoch, Oak Bay mayor, was in Vancouver for the UBCM convention but felt compelled to be in the courtroom when the verdict was being read Thursday evening. The room was full, yet quiet. As the verdict was read gasps could be heard.

RELATED: Oak Bay double murder trial: Five months of evidence, testimony summarized

“[This] doesn’t change anything, the girls are still gone … it’s hard to describe the emotions hearing the verdict – definitely relief,” says Murdoch.

Once the verdict was read and he had left the courthouse, Murdoch – feeling like someone had kicked him in the gut – called his daughter, who’s not far from the age of Chloe and Aubrey.

“I just said,’ I wanted to hear your voice’.”

RELATED: Oak Bay father Andrew Berry guilty in daughters’ murders

Murdoch can recall hearing the sirens pass his home two Christmases ago, when the lives of so many changed. Chloe, in Grade One at Christ Church Cathedral School, had recently fallen in love with horseback riding. Aubrey was in her last year of preschool at St. Christopher’s Montessori School. Both were artistic, energetic and loved spending time at Willows Beach.

On Friday, Chirst Church school brought in counsellors once again, as it has previously, said head of school Stuart Hall.

“It’s been a long 21 months, we’re glad its over and relieved that its over,” Hall said. “The trial has been particularly hard. We were somewhat shocked at the level of detail that came out, and it was hard for everyone.

“We are now looking for ways to move ahead and to heal.”

That healing is a process that started with a candle-lit vigil on Dec. 30, 2017, that drew more than 2,000 to Willows Park. Locals gathered to share their shock, pain and support for the girls’ mother, Sarah Cotton.

Murdoch says he doesn’t know what comes next for the community, but that he wants Cotton to know the community is behind her.

“She’s got an amazing circle of friends and she’s so strong,” he says. “I hope this brings some level of closure, I know it won’t really, but I hope it does.”

Murdoch says he hopes this verdict brings some peace to the first responders who dealt with the case as well.

“Having to go through the trial, it’s been hard and I think this will help those people a lot – just knowing they went through all of that for something,” he says. “That there’s an outcome here.”

A close friend of Cotton told Black Press Media the verdict was a relief, adding it was a harder six months than anticipated.

READ MORE: About this case.

With files from Nina Grossman and Travis Paterson



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

andrew berrydouble murderOak Bay double homicide

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

Just Posted

Local MLA Adam Olsen, a member of the Tsartlip Nation, here seen before the 2020 provincial election, said a new report finding “widespread systemic racism against Indigenous people” in the provincial health care system does not surprise Indigenous people. (Hansard TV)
MLA, Tsartlip member says ‘silo’ approach won’t work dealing with racism in health care

Adam Olsen calls for comprehensive approach in dealing with systemic racism

The president and chief executive officer of BC Ferries promises additional reviews to help sustain BC Ferries. (Black Press Media File)
BC Ferries to review expenditures following 43 per cent passenger drop in 2020

Promise from CEO follows new figures showing significant decline in passengers

A man was issued a $230 fine after refusing to wear a mask inside a Central Saanich business. (Central Saanich Police Services/Twitter)
Man issued fine after refusing to mask up in Central Saanich business

$230 ticket issued under the COVID-19 Related Measures Act

Teagan Hunt (Grade 12) and Aiden Grew (Grade 11) are the 2020 winners of Lambrick Park’s annual Queen & King of the Hill demanding race up Mount Doug’s Churchill Drive. (Photo courtesy of Tom Turnbull)
Lambrick King of the Hill wins Cedar Hill time trial

Aiden Grew sets course record for gruelling King of the Hill run

The University of Victoria will mark the eighth annual Giving Tuesday with its Add Sprinkles campaign which collects funds to support various student initiatives across campus. (Photo courtesy UVic Photo Services)
Nearly 150 Greater Victoria groups prepare for eighth annual Giving Tuesday

Last year Canadians raised nearly $22 million in 24 hours

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest weekend of COVID-19 pandemic with 46 deaths; more than 2,300 cases

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides COVID-19 update

Paramedics register patients at a drive through, pop-up COVID-19 test centre outside the Canadian Tire Centre, home of the NHL’s Ottawa Senators, in Ottawa, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020. A new poll suggests most Canadians aren’t currently worried that people in other countries might get a COVID-19 vaccine first. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Canadians not worried other countries will get COVID-19 vaccine first: poll

Forty-one per cent of respondents say they want the vaccine to be mandatory for all Canadians

Fossil finds at Mt. Stephen. (Photo: Sarah Fuller/Parks Canada)
Extreme hiking, time travel and science converge in the Burgess Shale

Climb high in the alpine and trace your family tree back millions of years – to our ocean ancestors

Kettle bells sit aligned in an indoor fitness studio. (PIxabay.com)
1 COVID-19 case at a B.C. fitness studio leads to 104 more infections, 6 school exposures

According to case data released by Fraser Health, one case of the novel coronavirus carries a big impact

Vehicles drive past a display thanking essential workers in Burnaby, B.C. on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
B.C. changing COVID-19 case reporting as virus spread continues

Manual counting takes more time, leads to errors

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Mask fundraiser helps make children’s wishes come true

From Black Press Media + BraveFace – adult, youth and kid masks support Make-A-Wish Foundation

Christy Jordan-Fenton is the co-author of the book Fatty Legs, which has been mentioned amid the controversy of an Abbotsford school assignment on residential schools.
Co-author of residential schools book condemns controversial Abbotsford class assignment

Children’s book mentioned amid controversy at W. A. Fraser Middle School

Kootenay East MLA Tom Shypitka takes over as energy and mines critic for the B.C. Liberal opposition. Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick (right) moves from health critic to assistant deputy speaker. (Hansard TV)
B.C. Liberals pick critics to take on Horgan’s NDP majority

Interim leader Shirley Bond takes seniors, long-term care

Most Read