Lisa Dudley’s family hits another roadblock in quest for murder victim’s possessions
The family of Lisa Dudley headed inside the Mission RCMP detachment Sunday hoping to finally have her possessions returned, more than a decade after her murder.
Minutes later, they walked out empty-handed, despite holding a court order for the force to turn over the late woman’s belongings.
Dudley’s mother Rosemarie Surakka said hitting yet another roadblock was especially frustrating as it came on what would have been her daughter’s 48th birthday.
WATCH: (Aired May 17) Family of murder victim win long battle to recover her belongings
“I thought, ‘Isn’t that great, because I can get her belongings for her from me, and I can sort of be free of all this,'” Surakka said outside the courthouse. “But it just never happened.”
Dudley was shot along with her boyfriend Guthrie McKay in their Mission home in 2008.
McKay died in the targeted shooting, but Dudley continued living for four days, paralyzed inside the house.
RCMP officers who responded to the 911 call made by a neighbour who heard gunshots didn’t get out of their vehicles to investigate.
When Dudley was discovered in the home, she was still alive and was taken to hospital, but died just hours after being found.
Four people were convicted in connection with the shooting.
WATCH: (Aired Feb. 13) Parents fight for murdered daughter’s belongings
Dudley’s mother and stepfather have been fighting to have her personal belongings returned to them since 2017, forced to navigate an often difficult and tangled legal web.
On May 17, a judge in Abbotsford ruled in the family’s favour, ruling the belongings that were seized during the police investigation should be returned.
RCMP successfully lobbied for an extra 30 days to look over the evidence before handing it over. That left Sunday as the court-ordered day for the items to be delivered.
But the evidence room at the Mission detachment was closed, and the family was told after arriving the evidence had been transferred to the “E” Division headquarters in Surrey, leaving Surakka perplexed about the apparent miscommunication.
“We’re not going to Surrey,” she said. “I have a daughter I have to look after. We’re not even supposed to be in the car for that long with the health problems that we have.”
Making matters worse, the parents said they were told one of the items meant to be returned, a cell phone, isn’t at the facility in Surrey either.
“We were told they couldn’t find it,” Surakka said.
In a statement to Global News, the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team said efforts were made to meet with the family on Sunday at “a temporary facility.”
“Investigators also made themselves available, on their day off work, to return these items,” Cpl. David Lee said. “Unfortunately, the times available were not suitable for Lisa Dudley’s family.
WATCH: (Aired June 14, 2018) Lisa Dudley inquest jury issues 9 recommendations
“We are sympathetic to Lisa Dudley’s family and remain in contact with them to facilitate the return as soon as possible.”
The family now plans to go to a judge on Friday to arrange an exact time and place for the items to be returned.
A coroner’s inquest into Dudley’s death held in 2018 made several recommendations, including that police have a mandatory followup protocol for all reports of crimes that could have fatal consequences.
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