Munson man Dylan Howard plead guilty to first-degree murder and was sentenced to 25 years in prison for the slaying of 36-year-old Fazal Rehman.
Howard appeared in Court of Queen’s Bench represented by lawyer Hugh Sommerville to make his plea. Howard appeared dressed in a black suit, the court was filled with the families of both the accused and the victim.
Warning: The following contains graphic and disturbing content, readers are advised to use their discretion.
Crown Prosecutor Ron Petersen read out the facts of the case that were agreed upon by the accused and the prosecutor.
It noted that Howard, and Rehman, of Calgary, both came from working families, however both “…fell into the dark world of the use, abuse and distribution of methamphetamine.”
Howard, who was 20 at the time, and Rehman became to know each other through a mutual female acquaintance in October of 2017. Howard had a handgun he wished to sell. The female set up a meeting for Rehman to purchase the gun in a rural location near Morrin, Alberta. Rehman picked up the female, gave her meth and they drove to the agreed location for the purchase. After the purchase, Rehman left, and the female acquaintance confided to Howard she had been sexually assaulted, This upset Howard.
Two weeks later Howard and Rehman met again in Beiseker where Howard exchanged several rifles for half of a pound of methamphetamine.
Howard continued to be upset about the alleged assault and a plan was developed to kill Rehman.
Another meeting was arranged for Howard to buy meth at a rural location. Howard, armed with a 7 mm rifle, knife and a can of gas went to the location.
As Rehman approached in his vehicle, Howard opened the door of his truck, leaned the rifle between the door and the truck frame and fired a shot at Rehman while he was driving. The bullet entered the underside of his chin. The vehicle came to a stop and Rehman exited his vehicle. Howard shot again and this bullet entered Rehman’s back and exited his right chest.
Rehman fell to the ground and Howard stabbed at Rehman’s upper chest and neck region. According to the agreed statement of facts, “Rehman died as a result of the gunshot wounds and the stabbing.” Howard poured gas on the car and Rehman’s dead body and set them afire.
Howard was arrested approximately a week later in Airdrie.
The facts note that Howard was affected by his consumption of methamphetamine and underlying mental issues. However, at the time of the killing, he was not suffering from a mental disorder that would render him incapable of appreciating the nature of the crime.
Justice J.T. McCarthy found Howard guilty.
Victim impact statements were by Mr. Pedersen from the family of Rehman. His wife said that in losing her husband she was “like a flower without scent, a fish without water.”
Howard spoke briefly to the court, apologizing to his family and the family of Rehman and expressed he felt it was his duty to protect a woman, but he “took matters way too far.”
Howard was sentenced to life in prison without eligibility of parole for 25 years.
A female co-accused, who cannot be named under the provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act, has a trial date set for March 30, 2020, in Drumheller.