WPS Press Conference (Photo JGJ)
An assault from last December has morphed into a 2016 homicide investigation.
On December 11, 2015, shortly after 8:30 am, EMS personnel were dispatched to a hotel in the 400 block of Westwood Drive regarding a report of an injured man.
Upon arrival, a victim suffering injuries to his upper body from an apparent assault was located. The man was conveyed to hospital in critical condition.
Members of the WPS Major Crimes Unit continued with the investigation.
The investigation revealed the victim, who was a guest at the hotel, had been assaulted in his room the previous night.
Police subsequently charged Darcy Jerome Beardy (29) of St Theresa Point, Manitoba with Aggravated Assault due to his alleged involvement.
Beardy was detained in custody.
On January 5, 2016, the victim, George Gabriel Flett (57) of St Theresa Point, Manitoba, died from the injuries he sustained during the assault.
After consultations with Manitoba Justice, police obtained a warrant for arrest for 2nd degree murder for Beardy.
On January 13, 2016, Beardy was arrested on the strength of the warrant, processed and returned to custody.
Flett is the second reported victim of homicide in Winnipeg in 2016.
Why is the Major Crimes Unit investigating a homicide case?
In cases where death is not imminent, a decision must be made, usually in consultation with a Homicide Unit Supervisor, if the Homicide Unit will take charge of the investigation.
The decision to investigate is generally based on the strength of evidence that suggests a victim is likely to succumb to their injuries. This information is often provided by medical professionals and conveyed by front line officers.
In this case, the Major Crime Unit investigated the circumstances presented to them at the time of the incident, a serious assault where death did not seem to be imminent.
As the victim was still clinging to life, the appropriate charges were laid and the suspect was detained in custody.
Unfortunately, the victim succumbed to his injuries.
The Major Crime Unit properly maintained ownership of the file and processed the suspect on the upgraded murder charges.
St Theresa Point, Manitoba
St Theresa Point is a northern Manitoba community found on the shores of Island Lake approximately 464 kilometres northeast of the City of Winnipeg.
A 2011 census indicates the community has a population of 2,871.