A young woman who was murdered this past weekend in a Brentwood Bay home was not the intended target, family say.
On Saturday May 11th, at around 12:30 a.m., 20-year-old Emily Caruana was killed in what police say is not a random attack, while her boyfriend and uncle suffered serious injuries inflicted by the same suspect, according to a family member.
48-year-old Nanaimo resident, Alan Charles Chapman has been charged with first-degree murder and two counts of aggravated assault in connection with this case, and is expected to make an appearance in court on Wednesday, May 15th.
In an interview with Victoria Buzz, Emily Caruana’s aunt, Cindy Lee Sonier reveals that the suspect, Chapman was unknown to Emily, her uncle (one of the assault victims), and to Cindy herself.
“She happened to be in that home for one night. It was the wrong victim,” said Sonier.
The identity of the intended target has not been released by police or family members due to the pending court proceedings.
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According to Sonier, her husband and 4-year-old daughter were visiting his mother, Doris Caruana at her Brentwood Bay home after Doris’ husband Victor passed away on March 14th, 2019.
Their only niece, Emily Caruana and her boyfriend were also visiting Doris to celebrate Mother’s Day with her grandmother.
The five of them had just spent a memorable day together at the museum and the petting zoo before heading back to Doris’ Meadowlark Lane home for the night. At the time of the attack, all five were fast asleep.
That night, when Cindy’s husband and his mother heard the sounds of shattering glass, they left their beds to investigate. That’s when they encountered the suspect.
The details of what happened afterwards have not been released due to the pending trial and investigation.
However, unconfirmed sources tell Victoria Buzz that Emily was stabbed to death, while her uncle and boyfriend were attacked and sustained serious injuries.
“He’s recovering from surgery to save his life. He has received 5 blood transfusions,” Sonier said when asked how her husband is doing. “He has lost his right kidney. He’s now out of the Intensive Care Unit and expected to recover and it will be a long recovery.”
Emily’s boyfriend has also reportedly been released from the ICU but the exact details of his injuries and recovery time are unknown.
After hearing the tragic and distressing news about her husband and only niece, Cindy Lee Sonier had to drop everything at her home and job in Nova Scotia and fly out to Victoria.
“When he was visiting his mom with our daughter, I was still working and so when I learnt the news in a very public way, I had to fly the same day across the country to come and be by his bedside,” says Sonier.
The family is need of assistance to cover various expenses, including the costs of Emily’s Celebration of Life and cremation.
In addition, Doris’ home is not accessible to the family as it is now a crime scene, leaving her and visiting family members displaced and in need of accommodation.
“[My husband] is scared of unfinished business,” says Sonier, referring to the fear that the killer might someday return to harm his intended target. “There’s a lot of survivor’s guilt and people are really distressed.”
Those who would like to support the Caruana family during this tragic time can donate to help them cover various expenses at this GoFundMe link.
At the time of publication, the fundraiser has reached approximately $5,700 of its $30,000 goal.