The Role of the Media:
The following explanation - Compliments of jury member, Kathy MacDonald:
On January 6th, 1995, the day after Shannon's near fatal beating, Tidsbury asked the media not to report the details of the beating. He said that it would compromise the RCMP's investigation. It wasn't until February 1, 1995 when RCMP put out a media release confirming that RCMP had a suspect in the murder of Mindy Tran that the BC media finally reported. But what they reported was exactly what the RCMP told them. This long media release stated that Shannon Murrin became a suspect within the first 24 hours, that his alibi was initially corroborated but had since fallen apart, that after being questioned by the three acquaintances he had pointed a loaded firearm at them and had subsequently been taken to Mission Creek Park and beaten by the three of them.
When the BC media finally reported the beating they exonerated themselves and parroted the RCMP explanation. The Kelowna Courier headline read: RCMP REQUESTED MEDIA GAG, WHY WE LISTENED IN THE TRAN CASE, PROSECUTORS HAVE ONE SHOT AT CONVICTION, CONVICTED CRIMINAL WAS LIVING WITH THE FAMILY OF MINDY'S BEST FRIEND, AND SUSPECT'S ALIBI FELL APART. The Province headline read COPS SLAMMED: KELOWNA RCMP BUNGLED PROBE OF MINDY TRAN'S MURDER, NEIGHBORS SAY but parroted the RCMP's version of the events January 5, 1995.
When the press was finally allowed to report again, they focused public attention exclusively on
Little was ever mentioned about a key witness who was found shot in the head at this same time.
 He then went on to dismiss the application. I also recall that Mr. Murrin was eventually acquitted on the charge, so one would assume he suffered no prejudice as a result of the ruling by Mr. Justice Oppal. The comments of Mr. Justice Oppal apply, in my view, to the application made at this stage to ban the public and media from the courtroom for the duration of the preliminary inquiry.
Murrin's case was not prejudiced by this ruling, but the Crown's case
against him was! Without knowing that Murrin was as an informant and that Sgt.Tidsbury was his handler, neither the public nor the jury could view this
beating as anything other than an overzealous cop trying to obtain a
confession. The selective use of media bans along with a controlled media ensured the rest. The press
were only able to publish one side of this
story, the story the police wanted you to hear. A secret collusion was later found to exist within the
Kelowna newspapers. "Co-incidentally", It was a story containing a
Shannon Murrin that exposed this relationship.