UPDATE: Death in North River leaves residents on edge

RCMP mum, locals concerned for their safety

Melissa Jenkins melissa.jenkins@tc.tc
Published on June 30, 2014
A police car blocks off part of North River Road June 29, in front of a home where a man was killed only hours before.
Photo by Melissa Jenkins

North River - Residents of the Town of North River in Conception Bay North have been shocked with revelations of a suspicious death of a neighbour June 29, but lack of communication with the RCMP has left some locals concerned for their safety.

The Trinity Conception RCMP detachment received a call just before 4 a.m. about an incident in the town of just over 550 (2011 census). When officers arrived at the home on North River Road, the man was suffering from serious injuries. He later died from those injuries.

Although information has not been released on the cause of death, neighbours said the man had been stabbed. Although not confirmed, RCMP have confirmed an autopsy would take place today.

The Compass has learned the man is originally from Port de Grave and resided in North River, is in his early 40s and is the father of two young children.

Those who know the victim described him as quiet and likeable, although it's been learned the man has had some turmoil in his life recently.

Meanwhile, the incident sent shockwaves through the region Sunday, with social media humming with speculation about what may have led to such a violent incident in an otherwise quiet community.

As of 5 p.m., there was no word from officers about an arrest, or if a suspect or suspects had been identified.

Although there has been a heavy police presence in the area, residents said they have not been updated on the situation. Some have also said not knowing who or why the death happened has left them on edge.

Evidence still being processed at the scene

"Has the guy been caught? We have no idea," said one resident, who asked not to be named. "I wish (the RCMP) would just tell us if we have anything to worry about."

It is unknown as of deadline if the injuries were the result of one person or several, if the victim was targeted or if it was a random act.

"We're not sure if we should be concerned or not," said another resident who was out for a walk several kilometres away from the crime scene.

Yellow police tape cordoned off the house, as well as blocked the road from through traffic in both directions. Between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. dozens of vehicles turned around after being denied access.

A police car was parked in front of the yellow tape on one side, while two cars and two sport utility vehicles were on the other.

Several drivers stopped to see what was happening, many surprised that this could happen in their small town.

"I just can't believe it," said the driver of a pickup truck who was re-routed back to Veterans Memorial Highway.

Forensic investigators were still on scene late in the evening, wearing protective footwear and carrying large totes in and out of the house. The investigators are still on scene today.

RCMP officers on site said they were unaware of any of the specifics on the case, and could not provide any details.