Skip to main content

Man accused in double-murder confronted outside Chilliwack, B.C., court

A Chilliwack, B.C., senior charged in a double-murder had to be escorted out of the courthouse Monday, as family of the people he’s accused of killing confronted him.

Sheriffs stood on either side of Robert Amede Freeman, 83, as he left Chilliwack court after making a brief appearance before a judge. He faces two charges of second-degree murder in the deaths of John Kavaloff, 58, and Valerie Smith, 67.

An angry relative yelled and swore at the accused as he walked out of the courthouse.

Meanwhile, Joy Finnigan, the daughter-in-law of the victims, tried to speak directly to Freeman.

“Bob, please do what is right,” she said.

“This is so hard. The grief is so extremely devastating,” she told him.

Freeman did not respond.

He was arrested Sept. 14 after police were called to a mobile home park on Chilliwack Lake Road following reports of shots fired. The bodies of the victims were found inside their home. At the time, police said the tragedy may have stemmed from a neighbour dispute.

Freeman was released on bail last week.

Finnigan said she was feeling “overwhelmed” because the family hadn’t expected Freeman to show up in person at court.

“I feel that the justice system is only for the suspects and not for the victims at all. And I feel like there needs to be an overhaul and more support for victims,” she said.

“Our entire lives have been put on hold. We’re unable to grieve. We’re unable to move forward with the loss of our mom and dad,” she said.

Finnigan said her in-laws would often bring food for Freeman on holidays like Christmas because he was a widower.

“I hope he remembers what the family did do for him,” she said.

Freeman returns to court next month. Top Stories

Stay Connected