WINNIPEG - With just a few day left to the year, Winnipeg is one homicide away from reaching the record 44 that shook the city in 2019. The Winnipeg Police Service says the city moved in the same direction for much of 2020, with its 43rd homicide taking place on Christmas Eve. Murder victims this year have ranged from three months old to 59 years of age.
Winnipeg police are investigating the Christmas Eve homicide that took place in the Spence neighbourhood following a call that evening to a home near the corner of Furby and Ellice. A badly-injured and heavily-bleeding man in his 30s was rushed to hospital in critical condition and later died. It was the third Christmas in a row during which police have investigated a homicide, following two years of badly-injured victims discovered on Christmas day in Winnipeg’s North and West ends.
The WPS has clarified the number of homicides this year, saying they investigated 42 homicides so far, but, while the June homicide of Gerhard Reimer-Wiebe is believed to have happened in Winnipeg, his body was found in Portage la Prairie, so the RCMP took on that investigation.
Meanwhile, a report by Stats Canada shows Manitoba has the highest per-capita homicide rate in the country. The province recorded 72 homicides in 2019, and 68 this year. Justice Minister Cliff Cullen says he’s concerned by the stats, and Manitoba Justice says they’re implementing several new initiatives to combat crime. “Manitobans deserve to feel safe in their communities,” a statement by the department said, “And we will continue to work to improve public safety in our province.”
Those who have info that can help investigators are asked to call Crime Stoppers at 204-786-TIPS (8477), or police at 204-986-6508.