Murders A-Z is a collection of true crime stories that take an in-depth look at both little-known and famous murders throughout history.
On November 8, 2010, 24-year-old Jennifer Pan was at home with her two parents when three men broke into their house, ranasacked the master bedroom, tied up Jennifer and then shot her mother and father after forcing them into the basement. Though the shootings seemed to be part of a robbery gone wrong, police soon turned their investigation to Jennifer, who turned out to be no innocent bystander.
Jennifer Pan grew up in the Canadian city of Markham, Ontario, with her younger brother. Her parents, Bich Ha and Huei Hann Pan, had immigrated to Canada from Vietnam. Jennifer’s parents worked hard in manual labor jobs at an auto parts manufacturer and wanted to provide their children with more opportunities than they were ever given.
According to Toronto Life Magazine, Hann — "the classic tiger dad" — was a tool and die maker, and Bich made car parts. Somehow, by 2004, they had saved up enough money to buy a large home in a quiet residential neighborhood and had $200,000 in the bank, plus a Mercedes and a Lexus. Hann and Bich expected their children to work as hard as they did.
An investigative journalist told Oxygen's "Killer Couples," “They had high expectations for their children in school achievements, academics, extracurriculars."
They considered Jennifer their “Golden Child.” She was enrolled in piano lessons by the age of 4 and did figure skating in elementary school. In both extracurriculars, she excelled and amassed a collection of trophies. In fact, Jennifer was so ambitious that she was thinking of trying to make the team to compete in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.
According to Toronto Life Magazine, in elementary school, it was not uncommon for Jennifer to get home from skating at 10:00 PM and then study until midnight. But unfortunately, Jennifer later tore a ligament in her knee.
In high school, Jennifer’s interests began to expand. She wanted a boyfriend, but Hann forbade her to date. He also didn't allow her to attend dances or parties.
An attorney for Jennifer told "Killer Couples," “He wanted his children to be focused only on education.”
Jennifer had always been a straight-A student, and according to Toronto Life, she was also a “social butterfly” who “mixed with guys, girls, Asians, Caucasians, jocks, nerds, people deep into the arts.” "Killer Couples" noted that Jennifer was “pretty and smart” and had no difficulty making male friends at school.
But, Jennifer’s grades began to slip a bit.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “She had like average grades, but not as high as her parents would've had wanted them.”
Worried that her parents would crack down even further on her social activities like emailing or texting friends, she decided to start forging her grades. When Jennifer was 16, she begged her parents to go on a trip to Europe to study music during her junior year, and they eventually relented.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “Being in Europe and seeing all of the beauty and not having her parents monitoring her every single day was extraordinary on its own.”
It was on this trip that Jennifer met fellow student Daniel Wong. Daniel was born in 1985 to Chinese-Filipino parents. He was a senior when Jennifer was a junior, and he grew up 20 minutes away from her. Daniel had a good upbringing, just like Jennifer, but he had a reputation as a bad boy who dealt weed at his high school.
During the trip, Jennifer had a terrible asthma attack. She almost blacked out and actually believed she was going to die.
Daniel came to her rescue. He coached her breathing and comforted her.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “Somebody saved her. For a young girl who is maturing and her hormones are surging, it must have felt just like love.”
For the rest of the trip, the two were inseparable. After they returned home, they began sneaking around, and this made their physical connection even more intense, according to "Killer Couples."
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “They shared intimacy and frankly they did things that Jennifer’s family would have considered quite forbidden.”
When Jennifer was 18, her parents were thrilled to discover an early acceptance letter in the mail from Ryerson University in Toronto. Little did they know that Daniel had also decided to live in Toronto so the two of them could be together.
Jennifer had promised to study during the week, live on campus and make the 30-minute drive home every weekend. Her plan was to study science at Ryerson University for two years and then transfer to the pharmacology program at the University of Toronto, which thrilled her father because he wanted her to go into pharmacology.
She carried through with her promise to come home on the weekends, and she would always update her family about her classes and college life.
What Jennifer failed to disclose to her parents was that she was actually spending most of her time with Daniel Wong in an off-campus love nest. And that wasn't the only thing she was lying about. Jennifer wasn’t even attending college.
According to Toronto Life Magazine, Jennifer’s early acceptance to Ryerson had been revoked after she failed calculus in her senior year. Instead of owning up to the situation, Jennifer forged documents to make it look like she had received a college loan, and she convinced her dad she’d won a small scholarship.
To make her lies more convincing, Jennifer obtained used science textbooks and bought school supplies. She spent time in libraries researching science topics and making notes in her textbooks. She would often hang around at cafes or visit Daniel at York University, where he was taking classes. She taught piano lessons for money, and at some point, she tended bar at a Boston Pizza restaurant, where Daniel was a kitchen manager.
After two years, she informed her dad that she had been accepted into the University of Toronto, and he was very pleased. But Hann eventually became suspicious of Jennifer after she had informed him that she was volunteering at a blood-testing lab at a hospital, and she’d need to spend more time away from the house because it required weekend hours.
So, he insisted he and Bich drop Jennifer off at the hospital the next day. This led to a confrontation, and Jennifer eventually admitted she hadn’t been attending the University of Toronto, didn’t do any work at the hospital and had been staying with Daniel, her boyfriend.
Hann forbade her from seeing Daniel, and she was completely cut off financially. Jennifer’s cell phone and laptop were taken away for two weeks, and then was only allowed to use them in her parents’ presence. She also had to endure surpise checks of her text messages, according to Toronto Life. The odometer on her car was also tracked to make sure she was only going where she said she was going.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “Because she had to break up with Daniel, she was heartbroken and depressed that she was given all these restraints at home where she couldn't go out. She was essentially at home all the time. She said she felt like a prisoner.”
An investigative journalist also told "Killer Couples" that Hann said “if she wanted to be with Daniel, then she would have to wait until he was dead.”
Daniel Wong eventually moved on and found a new girlfriend.
On the night of November 8, 2010, police receieved a 911 call from the Pan house — it was Jennifer.
Dispatcher: "911, do you req…"
Caller: "Help me, please! I need help."
Dispatcher: "Ma’am, ma’am…"
Caller: "I don’t know where my parents are!"
Dispatcher: "Ma’am, calm down. What’s going on?"
Caller: "Someone broke in and I heard shots, like, pops. I don’t know what’s happening. I’m tied upstairs. And I think my dad went outside… and he’s screaming!"
Police arrived at the house and discovered Jennifer tied up upstairs.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “Even though she was tied up, she said that she could reach around and pull the cell phone out and that’s how she called 911.”
In the basement, they discovered 53-year-old Bich shot twice point-blank in the head.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “The intruders had forethought, which was, let’s put blankets over their heads so that the sound is muffled and, uh, blood doesn’t splatter everywhere, including all over them.”
But Hann, who was home at the time of the attack, was nowhere to be found. Jennifer said the last time she’d seen her dad was while she was on the 911 call. In fact, you could hear her screaming out for her dad during the call. Hann had gone upstairs from the basement after the attack, and he could be heard screaming during Jennifer’s 911 call. He had been shot once in the face and once in the shoulder, and had gone unconscious. The killers thought he was dead.
But when he came to, he had managed to stumble to a neighbor’s house. He was barely alive and was rushed to the hospital, where he was placed into a medically induced coma. Jennifer had positioned the crime as a home invasion.
Her attorney said to "Killer Couples," “They asked, where's the money? We want money.”
She said they were male intruders, but she was having trouble describing them.
In an interview with the police, Jennifer said, “I don’t remember any of his clothing unfortunately. The only thing I can remember [...] is he had dreadlocks.”
The police became suspicious of the home invasion story. There was $200 in Bich’s purse that hadn’t been stolen, there was a safe that was untouched and the luxury cars were still in the garage. Also, the way Bich had been murdered and the intruders had attempted to murder Hann seemed more like the work of professionals than a random burglary.
When Hann woke up, police found out some interesting information. He claimed that the intruders did not seem to be total strangers to his daughter.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “She was talking to some of the intruders. They were actually very nice to her.”
Police brought Jennifer in for questioning, and in a couple of hours, she cracked.
An investigative journalist said:, “She set this whole thing up, and she paid for it. But it’d gone terribly wrong, she said.”
Jennifer claimed she had hired hit men to assassinate her. Without Daniel, life wasn’t worth living.
Additionally, an investigative journalist said, “She’d been exposed as a liar and a thief. She had absolutely no education, hadn’t even finished high school. As far as she was concerned, she was the walking dead. She just needed somebody to kill her.”
Jennifer said she’d hired someone who went by the nickname “Homeboy” to kill her. The police asked for Jennifer’s phone and found she’d communicated with a man named Lenford Crawford.
A lawyer told "Killer Couples," “Lenford Crawford was working as a part-time mechanic…. moving small amounts of marijuana to people that wanted it in the city.”
When police questioned Lenford, he said that he and Jennifer did have a mutual friend in common: Daniel Wong. Daniel was brought in for questioning. He claimed he knew nothing about the murders.
He told investigators, “Her parents didn’t want us to be… her family didn’t want us to be together. Um, and I respected that decision and I moved on.”
Police began combing through the phone records of all three. They discovered that Daniel, who did get another girlfriend, had not completely moved on from Jennifer.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples," “They were still using pet names with each other and saying they would always be there for each other.”
Investigators discovered that Jennifer and Daniel had been making frequent contact with Lenford, and that their messages were a bit cryptic, but there was something about “10 stacks.” Investigators realized it was slang for a $10,000 payment for the murder of two people.
Jennifer Pan, Daniel Wong, Lenford Crawford, aka “Homeboy" and two of Lenford’s associates were all put under arrest for first-degree murder of Bich and attempted murder of Hann. During the trial, prosecutors brought up that Jennifer stood to inherit half a million dollars. They claimed the motive was that Jennifer and Daniel had planned the murders because her father, Hann, had forbidden Jennifer from seeing Daniel.
On the stand, Jennifer stuck by her story, which was that she had not intended to have her parents killed.
An investigative journalist told "Killer Couples" that she claimed, “She’d hired the hit men to come in to make it look like a home invasion and kill her and then it went terribly wrong.”
According to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, “Jennifer Pan, 28, was... found guilty of both first-degree murder and attempted murder for her role in the 2010 incident, which left her 53-year-old mother, Bich Ha Pan, dead and her father with a critical head wound.”
According to the CBC, she was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility for parole for 25 years. Daniel Wong and “Homeboy” were found guilty of the same charges.
Jennifer’s dad said, "When I lost my wife, I lost my daughter at the same time. I hope my daughter Jennifer thinks about what happened to her family and can become a good, honest person someday."
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