Murder investigation launched for teen pulled from pond
Police believe Colton Crowshoe was murdered
Robyn Reed, CTV Calgary
Published Saturday, July 26, 2014 10:56AM MDT
Last Updated Monday, July 28, 2014 4:22PM MDT
Police now believe the 18-year-old pulled from a retention pond in the northeast was murdered.
Colton Crowshoe was last seen leaving a party in Abbeydale with friends in the early morning hours of July 4th. His family reported him missing when he didn’t come home. Initially, police did not believe there was any foul play.
On Thursday afternoon, Crowshoe’s body was found in a pond just off Stoney Trail and 16 Avenue NE.
Friday night police announced they are now investigating his death as a homicide. “For investigative reasons, the cause of death is not being released at this time,” says S/Sgt. Doug Andrus from the Calgary Police Service.
Police say there are no suspects at this time but there are a number of theories investigators are working on. Investigators are trying to narrow down if this was a targeted attack or not. They would like to speak to anyone who was at the Abbeydale party who hasn’t already been interviewed by police.
The family tells CTV News they are shocked and saddened by the news of Colton's murder. Colton is being remembered as a happy boy who loved his family very much and never got into trouble. “Colton never hurt nobody. He never hurt nobody,” says his father Jimmy Crowshoe through tears.
The family is also critical of how front line police handled the case. “Calgary police officers who responded to our call for help dismissed our pleas and downplayed our version of events and, at their discretion, ruled out any foul play in my nephew’s disappearance,” says Danielle Crowshoe, the victim’s aunt.
The victim’s aunt got emotional as she spoke about her feeling that First Nations people are seen as less worthy victims by police.
“The only solution offered by the police was an unempathetic and brief assurance that my nephew’s name would be added into a national missing persons database, and if he happens to run into police - and they run his name looking for warrants - they’ll see that he has been reported as a missing person,” says Danielle Crowshoe.
In reaction to the family’s criticism police say being missing is not a crime.
A member of the CPS Missing Persons team says officers take about 9 missing persons complaints each day in Calgary. Sgt. John Hebert refused to talk specifically about Crowshoe’s case but did say policies and procedures were followed.
Sgt. Hebert says each case is prioritized. “Things that might elevate the risk for us are things like mental or physical health issues…those who can’t care for themselves. Those are the ones we really have a strong focus on,” says Sgt. Hebert. “Those who can care for themselves get reduced in priority.”
Crowshoe’s family plans to hold a memorial for Colton this weekend.