One dead, one arrested in May 17 incident in Slave Lake

Updated June 15, 2020.

Joe McWilliams
Lakeside Leader

An altercation in the early hours of May 17 resulted in the death of one man in Slave Lake. The crime scene was a driveway on 3rd St. SW. For most of that day the street was blocked off. People in the neighbourhood reported police with a large dog making the rounds later that same day.

As of Tuesday morning, one person had been arrested in the case, said Slave Lake RCMP Staff Sgt. John Spaans.

Rumours persisted into Tuesday that there were two people killed. Spaans said this likely arose from what looked like two body bags on the ground. One of them was protecting evidence from the rain, he said.

What exactly happened police have not said. A news release from the RCMP’s Major Crimes Unit on May 19 said the victim was 34-year-old Christopher Valiquette of Swan River First Nation. A 32-year-old High Prairie man is facing a charge of second-degree murder.

The accused is due to appear in Slave Lake Provincial Court on July 8. Whether the courts will be back in session as normal by then remains to be seen. His first appearance was supposedly last week in Slave Lake, but in fact it was via CCTV before a judge in High Prairie.

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