Accused in West Kelowna hotel murder case withdraws guilty plea | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kelowna News

Accused in West Kelowna hotel murder case withdraws guilty plea

Kelowna Law Courts.

The Surrey man who pleaded guilty to the 2018 second degree murder of Rama Gauravarapu at a West Kelowna Best Western has had a change of heart.

Tejwant Danjou made a surprise guilty plea to second degree murder, Feb. 25, and today, Feb. 26, he had another surprise in store — he wanted to change his plea.

His lawyer told the court that he didn’t realize that by saying he committed second degree murder that he was admitting that he intended to kill Gauravarapu.

Now the courts are working on an application to withdraw the plea. It’s unclear whether that application will be accepted, but if it is a trial will commence shortly thereafter.

Danjou was arrested July 22, 2018, after multiple calls from the Best Western hotel in the 3400 block of Carrington Road about a woman in distress.

Gauravarapu was found in her room and despite intervention from paramedics, died that night.

The next day the crime scene extended beyond the hotel and into the parking lot of the adjacent Tim Hortons and Danjou, then 69, was charged with her murder.

The court file on the case indicates Danjou and Gauravarapu were a couple.

Danjou had been a real estate agent until news of the murder charge was circulated and his license was suspended by the Real Estate Council of British Columbia. Gauravarapu was employed at a Surrey Royal Bank branch.

Second degree murder comes with a mandatory life sentence and on the day he entered his plea, Danjou indicated that he was offered a 10-year sentence.

The matter will return to court at 10 a.m. Friday.

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