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Edmonton mass murder: Chief Rod Knecht defends police actions

12/31/2014 11:41 EST | Updated 03/02/2015 05:59 EST
Edmonton police Chief Rod Knecht gave details late Tuesday about the slayings of eight people killed in an apparent act of domestic violence.

Here are some highlights from his 12-minute news conference, which can be watched in its entirety by clicking the video.

Timeline

- On Monday at 6:52 p.m. MT, Edmonton officers responded to a weapons complaint at a residence in south Edmonton. It's alleged a male entered the residence, fired a gun and fled. Police found a woman, identified as Cindy Duong, 37,who had been fatally shot.

- The same evening at about 8:28 p.m., Edmonton police responded to a call to check on a residence in north Edmonton. According to the family, a man at that address had seemed depressed and overly emotional, and they were concerned he might be suicidal. Officers checked the outside of the home, but had no evidence that would allow them to enter, the chief said. There were no signs of a vehicle.

- After "significant disclosure" from another person, police returned to the scene at 12:23 a.m. Tuesday and entered the residence. Police found seven bodies inside. The killings appeared planned and deliberate, Knecht said. 

- At 2:20 a.m., investigation led Edmonton police to a location in the nearby city of Fort Saskatchewan, where they found a black SUV matching the description of a vehicle believed to be associated with the slaying in south Edmonton and determined to be missing from the residence in the north of the city.

- At 7:43 a.m., RCMP established that a man was found dead in the restaurant.

(Note: Some exact times were gathered from sources other than the news conference.)

Details

- The dead man in the restaurant was the same man police had been looking for in Edmonton. Connections were found between all three locations, Knecht said. 

- The victims were three women and two men, between the ages of 25 and 50; and a boy and girl under the age of 10.

- The weapon used was a 9 mm handgun legally registered in British Columbia in 1997 and reported stolen in Surrey, B.C., in 2006, Knecht said.

- There is no threat to the wider public, and no evidence the killing was related to gangs or drugs.

- The suspect, who had a criminal record dating back to 1987, was well known to Edmonton police. Officers had been to the north Edmonton residence twice before — once in 2012 when a man was arrested and charged for offences related to domestic violence, sexual assault and uttering threats; and once in 2013 for a check on welfare.

- Autopsies will be conducted on the victims and the male suspect on Jan. 1, after which police will hold another news conference, Knecht said.

Quotes

- "These murders were described by investigators as appearing to be planned and deliberate."

- "There has been some suggestion that this is gang or drug related. There is absolutely no evidence of this, but rather there is strong evidence that these events are the tragic result of family and domestic violence."

- “At this point it appears we did everything that we could have done at that time. Again, we couldn’t just arbitrarily enter a residence without having good information to breach a residence.”

- "As the chief of police, I’m very proud of the job [officers are] doing, but this is a horrific event for the city ... In my 39 years of policing I’ve never seen anything like it."

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