Man sentenced to six years in prison following June 2019 Fairway Road shooting

A six-year sentence has been handed down to the man who pleaded guilty in a shooting that left his friend paralyzed and two innocent bystanders injured.

On Thursday, Brandon James was given a five-year sentence for shooting three people on June 24, 2019 at 500 Fairway Rd. South in Kitchener and a one-year sentence for firearm and drug possession-related offences.

According to court documents, the incident was the result of a dispute over $405 in unpaid wages.

The Crown Brief Synopsis shows Hewa Waledkhani was upset his former employee attended his home to collect the unpaid wages, after a cheque in that amount was refused by a payday loan company because of a historical outstanding balance owed to them by Waledkhani.

The court documents show Waledkhani told his neighbour “somebody’s going to get shot” upon learning of the visit to his home by the former employee.

Waledkhani brought James to a meet-up with the disgruntled employee and another man outside a payday loan business on Fairway Road South. It was then Waledkhani and the two other men began to fight and James fired off two rounds.

One round hit Waledkhani, the bullet fracturing his T2 and T3 vertebrae causing paraplegia. The other round hit two innocent bystanders - one woman hit in the right knee, causing a fracture, and the bullet ricocheting into the left thigh of another woman.

One woman required two surgeries while the other still feels pain, despite treatment.

At first, James was able to evade police after fleeing the scene of the shooting but was arrested by police on an unrelated matter on Dec. 31, 2019. Police say he was found with a 9 mm handgun and drugs in his possession.

The investigation found the gun was the same one used in the shooting on Fairway Road, and police were able to connect James to the shooting.

On June 4, 2020, the Waterloo regional police arrested James in Petrolia in relation to the shooting.

The Crown decided against pursuing charges for Waledkhani because of his cognitive state. The court documents show Waledkhani had no recollection of the events of the shooting and his injuries left him with evident cognitive issues.

James was also required to provide a DNA sample, was hit with a lifetime firearms ban and is not to contact the victims while in custody.