Whitehorse Daily Star

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TRIAL BEGINS – Christopher Brisson (above) died in August 2015. Darryl Sheepway is on trial in connection with his death.

Court hears accused describe confrontation

Details surrounding the August 2015 death of Christopher Brisson were revealed Monday in Yukon Supreme Court.

By Emily Blake on November 7, 2017

Details surrounding the August 2015 death of Christopher Brisson were revealed Monday in Yukon Supreme Court.

It was the first day of trial for Darryl Sheepway, 38, who is facing a first-degree murder charge in relation to the 25-year-old Brisson’s death.

Sheepway appeared in court Monday morning and pled not guilty to the charge. But whether he is responsible for Brisson’s death is not in dispute.

During a court appearance last March, defence lawyer Lynn MacDiarmid said Sheepway was prepared to plead guilty to manslaughter, but the Crown would not accept a lesser charge.

Many of the facts in the case are not in dispute.

Crown prosecutor Leo Lane began presenting his case by reading an agreed statement of facts.

According to those, in early August 2015, Sheepway began buying crack cocaine from Brisson, and the two were meeting almost daily.

Sheepway was paying for the drugs by taking out cash advances on a credit card belonging to his wife, from whom he was hiding his drug use.

When she noticed the missing money, she took away his credit card and cell phone.

Sheepway had no access to money when he called Brisson on the landline from his home to meet on Aug. 28 to buy drugs.

He drove to the Mountain Ridge Motel, where Brisson was staying, and secured $50 worth of drugs on credit.

The court also heard Sheepway’s description of the events that took place that day.

Co-crown counsel Jennifer Grandy played a lengthy video taken on Oct. 4, 2016. In it, Sheepway, handcuffed and clad in a red-orange jail outfit, takes three RCMP officers on a re-enactment of the crime.

From the back seat of a van driving on the Alaska High way, Sheepway says he had planned on committing suicide that day and wanted to get drugs to build up the courage.

“I was freaking out because I’d used drugs all morning and all the night before,” he said.

He was nervous about asking Brisson for drugs on credit, he said, because he had never done so before.

After finishing the drugs he’d been given by Brisson, Sheepway began driving home, but decided he needed more drugs and drove back to the hotel.

Wanted drugs

“I was just focused on wanting more drugs,” Sheepway told the officers, noting that he was already high and “wanted more drugs bad.”

Sheepway got to the hotel and realized Brisson was no longer there. He used the office phone to call Brisson and asked to meet at a pullout on the McLean Lake Road, where they had met on previous occasions.

Video footage from an adjacent Norcope Construction property sets the time of the meeting at around 3:48 p.m.

Sheepway said while waiting at the pullout, he was deciding whether to ask Brisson for more drugs on credit or try to rob him.

“I was thinking, ‘What am I going to do? What am I going to do?’” he said.

He had a shotgun on his lap covered with a blanket, he said, because he was planning on using it to commit suicide.

While at the pullout, it was when Brisson looked down to get drugs that Sheepway raised his gun and told Brisson to give him all the drugs he had.

At some point, Sheepway shot Brisson, with the bullet entering Brisson’s left shoulder and lodging in his right jaw. An autopsy revealed that he died from “catastrophic blood loss.”

But the details surrounding the shooting are under dispute.

According to Sheepway, Brisson grabbed the gun. While the pair struggled, two shots went off accidentally, shattering Brisson’s truck windows.

Brisson then began driving forward, and Sheepway leaned out his window to shoot through the back of Brisson’s truck. Brisson then sped backwards, but crashed on the opposite side of the road, nose-first into the trees.

Sheepway said he thought Brisson had gotten away when his truck sped out of sight.

“I was panicking, thinking he had just gotten away,” he said.

But when he went to drive home, he saw that Brisson’s truck had crashed.

He stopped, walked over to the truck and turned off the ignition.

He found Brisson’s body lying about 10 to 20 feet away on the ground, face-up.

Sheepway took a baggie of drugs out of Brisson’s pocket and about $2,500 in cash out of the other.

He then drove home, stopping to take the drugs.

Sheepway said at the time he was thinking, “Oh my God, I just killed someone.”

When he got home, Sheepway changed and said he thought he’d better get rid of the evidence.

He drove back to the Mclean Lake Road, and said he was “freaking out” and “really high.”

He picked up the shotgun shells and put Brisson’s body in the back of his truck.

Dump body

Sheepway then drove onto the Alaska Highway. He said he was planning to dump Brisson’s body in the Yukon River somewhere out of town, but there was heavy traffic.

“I was panicking because I had a body in the truck and I thought people could see me,” he said.

Sheepway quickly turned onto the Miles Canyon Road.

Seeing that there were two parked cars and people walking on the other side of the river, he drove up the hill overlooking the canyon. He backed up to the edge of the hill and pushed Brisson’s body out the back of the truck.

Sheepway described Brisson’s body as rolling down the hill “like a sack of peanuts.

“I just thought, ‘Whatever; it’ll eventually get found,’ ” he said.

Sheepway then drove to a carwash, where he cleaned the blood out of the back of his truck.

He then went on to the Canada Games Centre, where he thought his wife was.

When he didn’t see her, he washed his hands and the blood off his pants in the washroom and disposed of the shotgun shells in a garbage bin in the parking lot.

He called his wife, who was at a friend’s house, and drove to meet her. Later, he drove home with his daughter and said he put her to bed at around 8:30 that night.

The next day, Sheepway said, he went back to Miles Canyon with his family, and they took a picture on the suspension bridge.

Sheepway said he wanted to see if anything was going on in the area, but didn’t check to see if Brisson’s body was visible.

Brisson’s remains were discovered Sept. 1 by people walking in the area.

According to the agreed statement of facts, on Aug. 30, Sheepway entered detox in Whitehorse with the help of his wife. He later went to Ontario for residential treatment.

While there, he committed a string of robberies between Nov. 9 and Nov. 25. He has since pled guilty to the related charges and has had them waived to the Yukon. Sentencing on that matter is set for Nov. 27 in Whitehorse.

In March 2016, Sheepway returned to the Yukon.

On May 28 of that year, he made a distressed phone call to his wife from Prince George, B.C. He said he planned to commit suicide, and admitted to having killed Brisson.

Sheepway was apprehended in Prince George under the province’s Mental Health Act.

When released, he was arrested on charges of theft and fraud.

In the Yukon, he pled guilty to the charges and was sentenced to a period of incarceration at the Whitehorse Correctional Centre.

Upon release from that sentence, he was arrested in Whitehorse on Sept. 19 on the murder charge in relation to Brisson’s death.

The trial, being presided over by Justice Leigh Gower, resumed today and is scheduled for four weeks.

Comments (14)

Up 18 Down 4

Huh? on Nov 11, 2017 at 12:55 pm

My brother's addicted to alcohol but it doesn't make it ok for him to shoot the someone at the liquor store to take booze and money.
it doesn't matter what the deceased shooting victim did, the trail is about who killed him. Even the guy on trial isn't saying the victim had a gun or threatened him.

Lots of people don't like drug dealers, but Sheepway did right up til the time he shot him, robbed his corpse and hid his body. That's by his own admission.
Don't understand why people are judging the victim in a murder trial.

Up 42 Down 4

BB on Nov 9, 2017 at 4:39 pm

Jasmine Marie - who knows what an upstanding member of society Christopher Brisson would have been if he had a chance to stop dealing crack after going to jail twice for dealing drugs, eh? And having $2500 in your pocket at 3:48 p.m. in the afternoon suggests he was well past 'making ends meet', on top of supposedly working at the same time.

I am sorry you lost your friend but don't kid yourself that he was a great guy who was only trying to scrape up a few pennies to visit his son. He was a crack dealer. He and all the other crack dealers like him are wreaking havoc on this town. The addicts are the other side of the equation, to be sure, but Chris Brisson was not a 'great guy' in my books. Admittedly I never met him. RIP

Up 37 Down 5

moe on Nov 9, 2017 at 4:32 pm

Jasmin Marie, Darryl Sheepway was 'trying to make ends meet' too, when he shot Chris Brisson.

Trying to make ends meet to visit his son, and selling crack, do not compute as a sympathetic story. No more than trying to make ends meet to feed a vicious crack addiction, and killing your crack dealer does.

Up 43 Down 1

Smith on Nov 9, 2017 at 12:59 pm

A horrific story of two men's downward spiral into drugs and the ultimate ugly ending for both....

Up 10 Down 47

Jasmin marie on Nov 9, 2017 at 12:49 pm

I will have all of you know Chris Brisson was a troubled but amazing man. He cared for everyone and anyone in his path. He would give you the shirt off his back if he had to but at the time of his death Chris was trying to make ends meet so he can go and visit his son. He was also working at this time too! the way I see it as you can't judge a book by its cover.
Drug dealers become drug dealers for reasons all of you may not know, and as far as I know Chris was stuck in the lifestyle but trying his god darn hardest to get out of it! Please be mindful when judging people.

Up 27 Down 15

Mr M on Nov 8, 2017 at 2:09 pm

@BnR I guess by your comment you support cracked out murders. This guy could've taken the support his wife and others have offered him and this tragic event wouldn't have happened. This leaves families left without fathers and the Justice system to once again make a wrong decision because he was under the influence of drugs and he will walk or at least get less time because he was screwed up on drugs. More taxpayers money out the window.
Chris Brisson also had a family that cared about him and now they are left with just the words and comments of the man that killed him. Chris Brisson doesn't have a voice. I feel sorry for all the family members involved. To many young people losing their lives to the all mighty drug lords and guys that think they are all bad asses because they are drug dealers in this town. Fix everything with a gun because that makes you tough. More should be done by the Government and Police.

Up 51 Down 4

Scary Yukon on Nov 8, 2017 at 1:28 pm

When people become drug dealers, their only concern is their supply, their money and themselves. They don't care about anyone, but themselves. When they decide to get into this line of work they know the risks of dealing with an addict or other dealers. Not saying what this guy did was right, but it comes with their line of work and they are not making the Yukon a better place. I hope the police actually start busting these people and the courts actually sentence them. How many people have drug dealers killed in the Yukon with Fentynol so far and haven't been charged with their crimes?

Up 58 Down 13

moe on Nov 8, 2017 at 1:20 pm

The crack dealer had been to jail a couple times already for dealing drugs, including one stint where he was rounded up with other drug dealers in Riverdale, guns also involved. He was no angel. You play the game, you take your chances.

Brisson helped to create the mentality we see in this confession. He was happy to take this person's money for as long as the addict could keep it together enough to keep buying drugs. He would have happily followed Darryl Sheepway right to his own grave. Darryl shot him first.
I have extremely limited sympathy for Christopher Brisson. He was a predator and a parasite, and the game flipped on him, that's all.

Up 29 Down 6

CJ on Nov 8, 2017 at 12:15 pm

@BnR are you kidding? Apart from endorsing vigilantism what if someone had been out for a walk in the area? How many times was this gun in the hands of an addict going to go off accidentally? This is an awful story from every single angle.

Up 25 Down 17

BnR on Nov 8, 2017 at 7:07 am

Uh, he shot a drug dealer folks. Yeah he did it for the wrong reasons, but......
Yukon56, by your comment I'm guessing you support drug dealers?

Up 28 Down 5

Guncache on Nov 7, 2017 at 8:54 pm

Ya, two shots went off accidentally. He must be innocent because he was high on coke. The solution is to have him jump into Miles Canyon, re-live everything and problem solved

Up 30 Down 6

Matt on Nov 7, 2017 at 5:07 pm

By Cracky! That is one F'ed up guy. I think I know why they want more than manslaughter. Throw away the key is correct.

Up 54 Down 11

Kj on Nov 7, 2017 at 3:12 pm

Read until "two shots went off accidentally". Right.

Up 59 Down 15

yukon56 on Nov 7, 2017 at 2:39 pm

throw away the key

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