Jennifer Pan felt trapped living under the strict and controlling rule of her parents. Desperate to get free she conspired with her boyfriend and hired three men to help her. Everything went according to her plan, her parents were taken to the basement and shot. Tragically, her mother died and her father was left in a coma. No one suspected Jennifer and she thought she was finally free from her restrictive parents. However, her plan was cut short when her father woke up from the coma.
The Pans were the epitome of an immigrant success story. In 1979, Huei Hann Pan and his wife Bich Han Pan fled Vietnam in search of a better life. Hann worked as a tool and die maker, while his wife worked in the same factory, making auto parts.
Like any father, Hann was determined for his children to have better opportunities than he did. The couple worked hard to save money, ensuring their children had the education and opportunities they missed out on. Their children were almost perfect; Felix Pan studied mechanical engineering at a prestigious university, and Hann wanted his son to design cars, not just assemble them like his parents.
Jennifer’s parents set many goals for her and had extremely high expectations. She received piano lessons at the age of four and also took figure skating lessons, training most days of the week. For her parents, their daughter was an Olympic-caliber figure skater, an award-winning pianist, and a straight-A student. Hann wanted Jennifer to become a doctor, but he acknowledged that she did not have the stomach for it, so he chose pharmacy as her career option.
In 2004, the family was financially stable enough to purchase a “large” house with a two-car garage on a residential street in Markham, a city with a large Asian population. Hann drove a Mercedes Benz C Class W203 and Bich drove a Lexus ES 300. They had saved $200,000 over time, as the Pans led a very disciplined and frugal life.
Jennifer Pan’s Life of Lies
Almost everything her parents knew about her was a lie. Jennifer was not the innocent, straight-A, piano-playing daughter she pretended to be. She began lying when she was a child, blaming much of her behavior on “Tiger Parenting.” Since Hann Pan placed education above everything, it got so bad for her that she made up lies to believe she was the daughter her parents wanted her to be.
Jennifer’s parents picked her up from school when her classes ended and kept a close eye on her extracurricular activities. Throughout high school, she was forbidden from dating boys or attending dances and proms, as her parents feared these activities would hinder her academic performance. Jennifer and her friends viewed her upbringing as strict and oppressive.
Jennifer started living a double life by making fake cards using a photocopier, even though she didn’t graduate from high school. She also wrote a letter thanking a prestigious pharmacy school, which was the career her father wanted her to pursue.
But things took a turn for the worse when Jennifer failed her final year of high school math class, and as a result, Ryerson University withdrew her early admission offer. She couldn’t cope with the thought of being seen as a failure, so she started lying to her family and pretending to attend university.
Rather than going to university, Jennifer spent her days sitting in cafes, teaching piano, and working at a restaurant to support herself. She kept up the charade by telling her parents that she had been awarded scholarships and had even accepted an offer to study pharmacology at the University of Toronto.
To further deceive her parents, Jennifer purchased second-hand textbooks and watched pharmacology videos to create notebooks filled with what appeared to be class notes. She also asked her parents for permission to stay with a friend near the university throughout the week, but in reality, she was staying with her high school boyfriend, Daniel Chi-Kwong Wong,
Jennifer kept up the pretense of graduating from the University of Toronto and even claimed to have volunteered at the Hospital for Sick Children. However, her parents, Hann Pann, and Bich Pann, were suspicious since she didn’t have a hospital ID or uniform. Bich followed her daughter to work one day and uncovered her deceit.
Hann was taken aback when she found out about her daughter’s double life and initially wanted to kick Jennifer out of the house. However, Bich convinced him to let her stay. Hann gave Jennifer an ultimatum: either go back to school and finish high school, and cut ties with Daniel, or wait until he passed away to resume her relationship with him.
Jennifer Pan’s Fabricated Story
On the night of the crime, a surveillance camera caught three gunmen outside the Pan house.
Jennifer said that the attackers had entered the house and one of them had tied Jennifer’s hand with a shoelace on her back and tied her to a railing on the second floor. Hann and Bich were then taken to the basement and the last thing she heard were gunshots.
Jennifer Pan’s Call to 911
Jennifer then called 911 and told the operator that she was upstairs handcuffed and she heard gunshots.
- Operator: What’s your name?
- Jennifer: My name is Jennifer.
- Operator: Someone broke in?
- Jennifer: Someone broke in and I heard shots like pop. I don’t know what’s happening. I’m tied upstairs.
- Operator: Did it sound like gunshots?
- Jennifer: I don’t know what gunshots sound like. I just heard a pop.
- (Hann Pan screaming)
- Jennifer: I’m okay! My Dad just went outside screaming.
- Operator: Do you think your mom is downstairs too?
- Jennifer: I don’t hear her anymore.
- Jennifer: Please Hurry. I don’t know what’s happening.
- Operator: Ma’am, Ma’am, Ma’am
- Jennifer: I don’t know where my parents are.
Jennifer recounted that her father miraculously survived the attack as she heard him scream from a distance while on the 9-1-1 call. Once emergency services arrived, Hann was rushed to the hospital and put into a coma. Unfortunately, Bich did not make it, having been shot multiple times in the back and ultimately in the back of her head while in the basement. When the police arrived, they discovered Jennifer tied up, confirming her previous description to the operator.
For the rest of the world, Jennifer was a grieving daughter – the survivor of a terrible invasion in which her mother died, and her father Hann Pan fought for his life in a coma. However, Jennifer’s story backfired.
Why did Jennifer’s story backfire?
Jennifer claimed that she was handcuffed to the railings on the second floor during the home invasion and murder of her parents. However, officers at the scene found it difficult to believe that she had managed to call 9-1-1 while in such a state. Additionally, the fact that the killers left Jennifer unharmed also raised suspicions.
The question of why anyone would leave an eyewitness behind was a perplexing one for the officers. Furthermore, officials found it hard to believe that Jennifer’s father would have left the house screaming for help, as she had claimed on the 9-1-1 call, rather than looking for his child in a dangerous situation.
The police grew suspicious of Jennifer’s story and began to keep a close watch on her. They noticed that she did not shed any tears and that her crying did not seem genuine, even at her mother’s funeral. These observations, along with other inconsistencies in her account, led them to investigate further.
Hann Pan Came Out Of Coma
What really happened that night was only known to the people in the house, and until now the police had only Jennifer’s word for it – but when Hann Pan came out of the coma, everything changed. Some believe it is a miracle that Hann survived after he was shot in the face at close range.
Fortunately, Hann remembered every detail about what happened in his house, the night he nearly died and his wife Bich was murdered. Hann described the incident differently from what his daughter had described. It was not the first time Jennifer was implicated in a lie.
Jennifer and Wong’s Crazy Relationship
Daniel Chi-Kwong Wong was Jennifer’s high school sweetheart, of whom her parents were unaware. At the age of 24, Wong grew tired of trying to maintain a relationship with Jennifer, who was constrained by her parents and could only meet him secretly.
When Jennifer found out that Wong had started dating another woman, she fabricated a story. She told Wong that a man had broken into her house, claiming to be a police officer and that several men had stormed in, raped her, and sent her a bullet, which she falsely claimed was sent by Wong’s new girlfriend.
The “Almost” Perfect Home Invasion Plan
However, text messages recovered from Jennifer’s phone revealed that Daniel had put Jennifer in touch with a well-known hitman, whom he had met through his drug dealings. One text message from the conversation Jennifer said: “I did everything for you”
According to police, Jennifer and Daniel had the plan to hire a professional thug for $10,000 to kill her parents, so that she would eventually inherit $500,000. Daniel gave Jennifer a SIM card and an iPhone so she could contact the thug.
On November 8th, 2010, Pan signaled to the killers that she had unlocked the door by turning her bedroom light on and off several times when she went to bed. She also spoke to one of the men, Mylvaganam. Shortly after, Mylvaganam and two other individuals entered the house through the unlocked front door.
They demanded all the money in the house and ransacked the master bedroom, taking Bich and Hann to the basement where they shot them multiple times. Bich was killed on the spot, but Hann survived.
After Hann recovered from the induced coma, he stated that he remembered everything. He saw his daughter coming down the stairs and being handcuffed. She spoke kindly to one of the attackers.
Investigation and Arrests
Jennifer was interviewed the night after the murder and arrested on November 22, 2010, during her third interview at the Markham Police Station. During this interview, she admitted to having hired the killers but claimed that she had hired them to kill her.
Trial Of Jennifer Pan
The trial of Jennifer Pan and her accomplices began on March 19, 2014, in Newmarket and lasted for ten months. All pleaded not guilty to the charges of first-degree murder, attempted murder, and conspiracy to murder.
Police had several pieces of evidence, including a comprehensive tracking of mobile device movements and text message traffic, including over 100 messages sent between Pan and Wong in the six hours prior to the killing.
During interrogations, Pan and her friend Daniel provided conflicting accounts. Notably, Pan claimed that she was not attacked, blindfolded, taken to the basement, or shot, leaving her as an eyewitness to the attack. On December 13, 2014, Jennifer, Daniel Wong, Mylvaganam, and Crawford were all convicted and each received a life sentence with no chance of parole for 25 years.
Before Jennifer was taken to prison, her father addressed her saying “I hope my daughter Jennifer thinks about what happened to her family and can become an honest person.”
Jennifer Pan Now
As of 2016, Jennifer Pan was serving her sentence at Grand Valley Institution for Women in Kitchener, Ontario. She is also prohibited from contacting Wong.