Just over a year after Taylor Johnson was found dead in a vacant Langley home being used as a marijuana grow operation, a Surrey man has admitted to manslaughter.
Jesse River Jordan Hill appeared in B.C. provincial court in Surrey Wednesday to enter a plea to a charge of manslaughter with a firearm. He was initially charged with second-degree murder, break and enter, intentionally discharging a firearm and disguising his face.
On the evening of Feb. 26, 2013, Langley RCMP were called to a home in the 2000-block 200th Street in South Langley to check on Johnsonâ€™s well being. Officers found the 21-year-old dead.
The house was being used as a marijuana grow-op and police believed that whoever killed Johnson was after the crop. The men did not know each other. Johnson was merely a caretaker at the house and was not involved in the grow-op.
Shortly after Hillâ€™s arrest, Integrated Homicide Investigation Team spokeswoman Sgt. Jennifer Pound said, â€œTaylor was a good kid with no criminal record. He was naive, and he made a bad decision that ultimately cost him his life.â€
Johnson was the son of the lead pastor at South Delta Baptist Church. His family described him as gentle, trusting and caring.
A sentencing hearing has been scheduled for Hill in September. According to the Criminal Code of Canada, the minimum sentence for manslaughter with a firearm is four years in prison. Hill has been in custody since he was charged in October 2013.
– Jennifer Saltman is a reporter for the Vancouver Province.