Melissa Jean Chatham

Melissa Jean Chatham

Surrey killer’s parole denied

Kelly David McKenzie beat girlfriend Melissa Chatham to death in 2008.

A Surrey man who beat his girlfriend to death four years ago was denied day parole earlier this month because his temporary release from prison would place the public at “undue risk.”

A decision by the Parole Board of Canada dated Sept. 5, said not only was Kelly David McKenzie’s 2008 offence grave, but he has limited insight into his crime, was unlawfully at large on a previous release (with the help of family) and is assessed at a high risk for violence in a relationship.

McKenzie, now 39, was initially charged with second-degree murder in the beating death of Melissa Jean Chatham, 24, but pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced in late 2009 to nine years in prison, less three years for time served. The parole document details how McKenzie assaulted Chatham over a prolonged period of time, in front of his young son, and then did not call 911 for several hours. McKenzie claimed he was drunk and high and was upset because he thought Chatham had stolen money from him.

McKenzie waived his right to an in-person parole hearing – prompting friends of Chatham to label him a “coward” for not being able to face her family – so his parole review was based only on submitted documents.

The parole board said while McKenzie’s behaviour in jail has improved and he claims to have been sober for four years, he has demonstrated “pro-criminal values,” used violence to achieve personal goals and has a lengthy history of abusing intimate partners.

“A psychological assessment dated November 28, 2011 concluded that you have a rather superficial understanding of your crime process…” wrote the board.

The day parole was requested so McKenzie could attend a community based residential substance abuse treatment program. McKenzie wrote to the board himself about his insight and remorse, among other things.

“In reading your submissions, the Board concludes that you continue to minimize your offence and blame the victim despite your claim that you accept responsibility and are remorseful,” reads the parole decision.

Chatham’s murder inspired an anti-violence forum in North Delta last year called Take a Stand/Lend a Hand geared at targeting violence and assisting victims.

Surrey North Delta Leader

Just Posted

Dooris Raad was last seen in South Surrey’s Ocean Park neighbourhood on June 7. (Surrey RCMP photo)
Lorraine Gibson, 90, received a COVID-19 immunization at the South Surrey Park and Ride vaccination clinic. (File photo: Aaron Hinks)
Surrey has had 25% of B.C.’s total COVID-19 cases

Surrey recorded 4,012 cases in May

Scales of Justice, Image courtesy Creative Outlet
Scales of Justice, Image courtesy Creative Outlet
Teacher’s elbow injury case against Surrey School District, WorkSafeBC struck by judge

Judge says processes put in place by legislation, collective agreement must be followed

Doris Anderson’s digital triptych Aberration, which she is marketing as an NFT.
Semiahmoo Peninsula abstract painter dives into NFT market

Works sold as one-of-a-kind digital files

Vancouver law courts. (File photo)
Surrey murderer loses appeal in 2011 Christmas eve shooting in Newton

Bradley McPherson, 28, was shot in the back of the head during an after-hours house party

t
How to tell if a call from ‘CRA’ is legitimate or a scam

Expert says it’s important to verify you really are dealing with the CRA before you give out any info

British Columbia-Yukon Community News Association’s 2021 Ma Murray Awards were handed out during a virtual ceremony on Friday, June 10. (Screen grab)
Black Press Media winners take gold at B.C. and Yukon journalism awards

Publications received nods in dozens of categories

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets campers while visiting McDougall, Ont. on Thursday, July 19, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
71% of B.C. men say they’d prefer to go camping with Trudeau: survey

Most British Columbians with plans to go camping outdoors say they’d prefer to go with Trudeau or Shania Twain

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

Chilliwack cocaine trafficker Clayton Eheler seen with a tiger somewhere in Asia in 2014. Eheler was sentenced to nine years jail in 2018, but was released on bail in October 2020 pending his appeal of conviction.(Facebook)
Director of civil forfeiture seeks $140,000 from Fraser Valley drug dealer’s father-in-law

Clayton Eheler’s father-in-law Ray Morrissey caught with money in Fort St. John by B.C.’s gang unit

A Comox Valley shellfish operator pleaded guilty and was fined $10,000 in provincial court in Courtenay earlier this year. Record file photo
B.C. clam harvester fined $10,000 for Fisheries Act violations

Charges against three others were stayed in Courtenay Provincial Court

Frank Phillips receives a visit from his wife Rena at Nanaimo Seniors Village on their 61st wedding anniversary, March 31, 2020. Social visits have been allowed since COVID-19 vaccination has been offered in all care homes. (Nanaimo News Bulletin)
B.C. prepares mandatory vaccination for senior care homes

180 more cases of COVID-19 in B.C. Friday, one more death

The arrest south of Winnipeg occurred before Bernier was to arrive at a protest in the city. (Twitter/Maxime Bernier)
Maxime Bernier arrested following anti-rules rallies in Manitoba: RCMP

He’s been charged with exceeding public gathering limits and violating Manitoba’s requirement to self-isolate

Cruise ship passengers arrive at the port of Ketchikan, Alaska in 2018. Cruise lines have begun booking passengers for trips from Seattle to Alaska as early as this July, bypassing B.C. ports that are not allowed to have visitors until March 2022 under a Canadian COVID-19 restrictions. (Michael Penn/Juneau Empire)
B.C. doesn’t depend on U.S. law to attract cruise ships, Horgan says

Provinces to get update next week on Canada’s border closure

Most Read