Author Topic: David Shearing aka David Ennis - Murderer - Wells Gray Park - Clearwater, BC  (Read 46638 times)

debbiec

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As I said in an earlier post peterg, there was some speculation by the people in town that he had an accomplice that drown some time ago up at Clearwater Lake. That has never been substantiated. The truth will probably never be known, seeing as that person is deceased and David Shearing has steadfastly maintained for more than twenty five years now that he acted alone.

Chris

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I doubt they will ever know either. So it makes you wonder about the other deaths since and even during.

Adrian

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Strange but true: Women who fall for inmates:::and marry them!


'Til death do us part -- women who marry jailed men
Fatal attraction or a shot at redemption?
 
Larissa Liepins
Canwest News Service

Saturday, November 08, 2008

David Shearing in custody in 1982. Shearing pleaded guilty to the murder of six members of the Bentley and Johnson families in 1982.
CREDIT: Debra Brash, Kamloops Daily News, File
David Shearing in custody in 1982. Shearing pleaded guilty to the murder of six members of the Bentley and Johnson families in 1982.

When Heather Ennis started writing letters to David Shearing, she knew he was a killer.

She knew he had shot and killed six members of the same extended family who were camping near Wells Gray Park in the B.C. Interior in August 1982.

It's unclear whether, when Ennis married him -- 10 years into his life sentence -- she also knew her husband had held two of his six victims captive for nearly a week: 13-year-old Janet Johnson and her 11-year-old sister, Karen -- and that he'd tried four times to rape Janet.

Still, Ennis has stood by her man for the past 14 years.

"He's an ordinary human being," Ennis said after Shearing's unsuccessful bid for parole last month. "I know the man's heart is in the right place."

What's not so ordinary, perhaps, is that Ennis is far from alone. Her willingness to forgive her husband's horrific acts is common among women with boyfriends or husbands doing time for violent crime.

On online discussion boards such as prison-online.com, women chat anonymously about their longing and frustration with having a man "down for life."

On a thread titled, How did you meet your lifer? (a lifer being someone serving a life sentence), a typical entry reads, "I met my lifer while he was inside ... We just corresponded as friends for quite some time. He tried not to fall in love with me but couldn't help himself. We have been together for over 3 yrs. now and recently got married. It's WONDERFUL!!!!"

Inmates in Canadian prisons -- and most inmates in the U.S. -- have no access to the Internet. But a plethora of mostly U.S.-based pen-pal sites make such correspondence -- and relationships -- possible. They charge inmates a fee to post their ads, then print and forward the responses.

WriteAPrisoner.com, for instance, has 4,923 inmate profiles, searchable by age, ethnicity, astrological sign, and whether the prisoner is serving life or on death row.

Prisonpenpals.com has a Canada section, where a good-looking young man from Quebec writes, "I'm locked up for 25 years because I killed a police officer while acting in self-defence. I'm working on an appeal and hopefully I'll be successful. Age, race and appearance don't matter, I just want to find someone to share my secrets with."

INMATES ENCOURAGED

Corrections Canada encourages inmates to form romantic relationships with people on the outside, says Neil Boyd, author of The Last Dance: Murder in Canada.

"They know that men who are released into stable relationships have a much better chance of success than men who have no contacts of this kind," says Boyd, a professor at Simon Fraser University's School of Criminology.

"It seems, on the face of it, a risky proposition, but again, most violent criminals aren't walking time-bombs; they're not like Paul Bernardo or Clifford Olson."

In fact, 95 per cent of murderers in Canada won't return to jail after they're released, Boyd says.

(There were 594 homicides committed across Canada in 2007, the latest numbers available.)

"They may go back for violating their terms of parole, but to be convicted of a violent offence after release from a homicide conviction is extremely rare."

Shearing -- who's eligible for a review for full parole every two years -- is a "moderate" risk to reoffend, according to his parole officer.

But many critics say romancing a violent criminal can stem from a very unhealthy impulse that can ultimately turn fatal.

Justin Ciale, a retired penitentiary psychologist, says he knows of at least two women who didn't survive their correspondence with men behind bars.

"I was always intrigued by the fact that women who would fall for inmates who were sexual predators," Ciale said, stressing he hasn't systematically studied the phenomenon of hybristophilia (the syndrome of being sexually aroused by those who commit particularly cruel and violent crimes), which he observed when he worked at Saint-Vincent-de-Paul penitentiary before it closed in 1989.

"A couple of the women were victims: The men killed them after they were released."

In another case, described by Jacquelynne Willcox-Bailey in her book Dream Lovers: Women Who Marry Men Behind Bars, two middle-aged and devoutly Christian sisters in Australia, Avril and Rose, left long-term "boring" marriages for men in prison.

One man had been convicted of minor property offences. The other had killed his previous wife, and promised to convert to Christianity for his new wife, Rose.

Both relationships ended tragically: A week after his release, the thief bludgeoned Avril to death with a hammer. The other husband ended up back in prison after trying to cut Rose's ear off and pull out her teeth with pliers.

But a more mundane reason so many women seek relationships with notorious killers, says Sheila Isenberg, the New York-based author of Women Who Love Men Who Kill, is the desire for vicarious celebrity.

Because Shearing's case was so widely reported and sensational, "his wife would fall into the category of women who get involved with serial or mass murderers, or sensational killers, rather than women who get involved with garden-variety murderers -- someone who's committed one crime, who doesn't have a high profile, who isn't in the media," says Isenberg, who interviewed three dozen "serial-killer groupies" for her book.

Bernardo has received marriage proposals, and Carol Ann Boone married Ted Bundy -- after he was convicted of killing about 30 women across the U.S. Serial killer Richard Ramirez, who murdered and dismembered 13 people in the 1980s, had no trouble finding a bride in Doreen Lioy.

Female killers, though far fewer, are no different. Convicted rapist and killer Karla Homolka attracted fan mail and marriage proposals, and websites such as ladiesofthepen.com feature hundreds of ads for female inmates -- some racier than others.

Isenberg argues the impulse to contact violent criminals is even more common since she wrote her book in 1991.

"There were no reality TV shows, there were no makeover shows; we did not have the kind of celebrity worship that we have today. Back then, there were women who got involved with serial killers, but now, people want to be famous, they want to be on television.

"And then, we have the Internet, and you can be on the Internet in a million different ways."

Katherine Ramsland, who teaches forensic psychology at DeSales University in Pennsylvania, agrees.

"If you're dating someone notorious, you put it on your Facebook or myspace page, and you know a lot of people are going to look at that and say, 'Ooh, aah, how'd you get that guy?' "

PEN PALS BARTERED

A common practice, which Ramsland says many offenders have described to her, is the sale or barter of women's addresses and phone numbers: An inmate will sell his pen pal's address to an offender being released. "That guy will go to the woman's house and try to get money from her or something, while others are so successful in their manipulation, women give up jobs and sell their homes to be close to the offender."

Several of the nearly 900 postings on prisontalk.com's "Met while incarcerated" discussion thread bear this out.

One woman writes: "I met my fiance through a pen-pal ad. ... We haven't met yet, but I plan on going out there this summer, and moving to be closer to him so we can start our life together when he gets out."

Boyd, however, says even killers can eventually lead normal lives -- especially if they have stable relationships to keep them grounded.

"This is often about men who have made tragic mistakes, but who don't represent significant risks in relationships. We shouldn't make the assumption that, just because a woman gets involved with a man behind bars, there's something pathological about her or their relationship.

"It may very well be a healthy relationship, and it may well last a lifetime."

That's rare, says Willcox-Bailey.

"I haven't yet met one couple whose relationship lasted long-term after the offender was released."

With files from Jamie Komarnicki, Calgary Herald, and Elise Stolte, Edmonton Journal
? The Edmonton Journal 2008


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mauvelilac

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Whatever floats your boat. I mean really it must have something to do with that fifteen minutes of fame scenario. What will these people have to offer when they are released? If they were to have children, what kind of life would those children have? I can see the topic of conversation in the school playground, "My daddy's a doctor...my daddy's a lawyer, what does your daddy do?" "Mine was a serial killer who has been rehabilitated." I'm shaking my head right now. I knew it happened because of Karla Homolka, but really what are these people thinking or are they even thinking?

Chris

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I see this often. In fact, that is how Steven Truscott met his wife, she wrote him in prison and waited for him to get out. For some reason, some women are attracted to really twisted evil perverted sickos;

mauvelilac

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I know Chris but Steven Truscott is not your run of the mill killer. He was sentenced to hang at a young age, then the sentence was commuted then he was paroled and went on to lead a productive life. There's still no definative proof he actually killed Lynne Harper. His prospective wife I read was somehow related to his parole officer which didn't put him at a high risk to reoffend, if indeed he offended the first time around. Which I don't believe he did, but I think remember reading you do.
This Shearing guy killed an entire family and is at high risk to kill again. That's comparing bananas with ice cream.

Adrian

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Shearing does  not need to be out wandering around. He has to stay in prison. That totally f**Ked up PED, killed a family to get at the kids. Then he kills them. This peice of maggot turd, should never be allowed in public again.


lostlinganer

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you know adrian; the more and more I read of these animals being set free again - the more I lean toward the Satanic theory.
Officials are given position in high power - licenses to practice - etc. based on superior ability and education, which, in theory got them where they are.
That being said, you wouldn't need much intelligence to know you don't catch a fox in the hen house, take him out of there, bury the dead hens, and then put him back to kill the rest.
And that being said, we know these justice officials (backed by government officials) and I'll include the brainless ones who got in with drag and/or the lawyers who paid other brains to take their bar exam - and eventually worked their way up the ladder to positions of power .... all have above average intelligence.  This can only mean they are deliberately accomodating the lawless, murdering insanities occurring after they have set these animals free again.
The only thing that can explain this is an underlying hate for the general public and/or truth to the many times talked of and written about, satanic beliefs of power from the devil and rewards beyond belief.  imo

Sleuth

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He will be fully eligible for parole in 2010.

Killer denied parole says he hates 'own skin'
Driven by sadistic fantasies, Shearing shot family, kept girls alive for six days
Elise Stolte, The Edmonton Journal
Published: Thursday, October 23, 2008

BOWDEN - With the four adults dead around the campfire, David Shearing crawled into the tent to find the object of his violent, sexual fantasies -- blond-haired, 13-year-old Janet Johnson.

But she started to cry when he hit her.

"At that point, I lost the excitement that I had felt. I wasn't able to continue any further in the sadistic part of it," Shearing told his first parole hearing Wednesday, 26 years after the crime.
Shelley Boden and Kelly Nielsen speak to the media as they arrive at the Bowden Insitution for the parole hearing of David Ennis, also known as David Shearing, who killed their relatives in 1982.View Larger Image View Larger Image
Shelley Boden and Kelly Nielsen speak to the media as they arrive at the Bowden Insitution for the parole hearing of David Ennis, also known as David Shearing, who killed their relatives in 1982.
More pictures:  < Prev | Next >


With their parents and grandparents dead, Shearing said he kept the girls alive for six days and molested Janet.

Then, because he was scared he would be found, he shot them both in the back of their heads, loaded their bodies into their family vehicle and burned them.

He had never met the family before he slaughtered them.

On Wednesday, three members of the National Parole Board heard his first application for parole at Bowden Institution south of Red Deer.

Shearing's apologies and explanations weren't enough.

"The board's decision today is to deny both day and full parole," member Dave Scott said after three hours of questioning.

Shearing, now 49 and going by his mother's maiden name, Ennis, can again apply for full parole in two years.

In August 1982, George and Edith Bentley went camping near B.C.'s Wells Gray Provincial Park with their daughter Jackie Johnson, her husband Bob, and their granddaughters, Janet and 11-year-old Karen.

When they didn't turn up three weeks later, Bob Johnson's boss called police and their families started a search.

"That was a start of a never-ending nightmare," Kelly Nielsen, the girls' cousin, told the parole hearing.

It was nearly a month before Neilsen's mother phoned phone to say the Johnsons' car had been found. "They're all dead, all six of them," Nielsen remembered her aunt repeating in horror over the phone.

The family held a memorial service the day before Nielsen's 18th birthday. The charred remains of all six victims fit inside one baby-sized casket, she said.

"If I focused on it too long, I would scream until my vocal cords would no longer allow it."

Other cousins, themselves now mothers and fathers of young families, talked about growing up nearly in prison themselves, their parents afraid to let them out of their sight.

Michelle Botelho said she grew up without any family photographs because, years later, her father's emotions kept him from looking at pictures of the victims.

"You have ruined my life," she told Shearing. "I will never know the man my father was (before) his heart was ripped out of his chest."

Shearing sat with his back to the two dozen relatives in the gallery and dabbed his eyes with a tissue during the victim-impact statements.

Balding and heavy-set, he has served more than half his life in prison. Shearing told the hearing he started having violent sexual fantasies at the age of 15 and would sometimes be so preoccupied with them that he would be on "autopilot" throughout the day.

It was a product of his anger at not fitting in, he said. "I thought it was normal for a man to think that way."

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Sleuth

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I forgot to mention that he has been married for 15 years, Heather Ennis. Met his wife while in prison. But he does get day parole for group therapy and job interviews.

Sleuth

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The sad part is that Shearing/Ennis did not tell the Police that he had kept the two little girls for six days until about/after a year later. He said and I quote, "they kill people like me". (meaning in prison), so he kept quite about it. That is how the family found out what happened to the two little ones.

Chris

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I forgot to mention that he has been married for 15 years, Heather Ennis. Met his wife while in prison. But he does get day parole for group therapy and job interviews.

huh? Why do murders and other sickos get married in prison? The night stalker, steve truscott, this guy and so many others I have read getting love letters in prison? some people must have an attraction to these kind of monsters for some reason. It is just sick.

Red Fox

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Can someone post an accurate time line as to when David Shearing was for sure in police custody back in 1982 - 1983? Some articles have me confused as to how much time had passed from the incident, to the time he was arrested for the murders. I specifically want to know if he was free for most of 1983. Can anyone that knew him back then tell me what color or kind of vehicle he drove back then? I think this guy may be good for more murders than we know.

SeeOtter

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Good question Red Fox.  There is information about this in the book "The Seventh Shadow" written by Michael Eastham who was a RCMP investigator in this case.  According to that book:

- August 1982: the Bentley & Johnson families are murdered in Wells Gray Park.  A few weeks later, these two families are declared missing by coworkers and relatives, ongoing search in the area for these 6 people and their 2 vehicles (car and camper truck).
- September 1982:  Their burned car is found in Wells Gray Park with 6 bodies inside.  The camper truck is missing.
- May 1983July 1983:  Former Clearwater resident David Shearing (Ennis) arrived in Tumbler Ridge, apparently to live and work there.
- October 1983:  Two forestry workers found the burned camper truck in Wells Gray Park.  The RCMP are now convinced the killer is a local person.  Then, some tips from Clearwater folks pointed to David Shearing (Ennis).
- November 1983:  the RCMP apprehended David Shearing (Ennis) in Tumbler Ridge.  During the interrogation, David confessed to murdering the Bentley & Johnson families.  So, he was finally apprehended over a year after the Bentley/Johnson murders.
- Mid-April 1984 trial:
« Last Edit: June 17, 2009, 02:06:17 AM by SeeOtter »

SeeOtter

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Another thing:

Right after the April 2004 murder trial, where David Shearing (Ennis) was found guilty of second degree murder in the case of the Bentley/Johnson families and sentenced to life, RCMP investigator Eastham questioned Shearing privately about the 2 murdered little girls, Janet and Karen Johnson.  Shearing then admitted to Eastham that he murdered the 4 adults because he wanted to get the 2 girls, and that he molested the girls for several days before killing them.  (According to the book.)

That particular additional info made the national news at the time.  I remember clearly having specifically heard about that back in 1984 from a news report over the radio, where I lived outside of B.C.

I'm just mentioning this because there seems to be some confusion these days as to when exactly the true 'motive' was revealed and made public.  I also wonder how Shearing survived all these years in prison, apparently among the general population...  I thought GP did not deal kindly with child molesters/murderers.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2009, 02:18:03 AM by SeeOtter »