'Random' Double Homicide in Alberta: 2 Teens Charged
Two 14-year-old boys in Edmonton, Alberta, have been charged with, respectively, first-degree murder and accessory after the fact to murder. The two boys were wards of the province and had run away from Bosco Homes, a rural youth treatment centre near Edmonton.
Less than nine hours later, at 2:45 a.m. Monday, the 14-year-old boys were pulled over by city police in north Edmonton after someone spotted them driving erratically. The pair, both wards of the province, were driving a stolen 2006 white Ford pickup truck and were arrested on the spot.
What happened during the short window of time between when the pair ran away and when they were arrested is now at the centre of a double murder investigation that has shocked Alberta and raised troubling questions about the province's child-welfare system.
Authorities traced the Ford to a property in Strathcona County, where they found Baldur (Barry) Boenke, 68, and Susan Trudel, 50, lying dead in the midst of a bloody murder scene, with both bodies bearing obvious signs of trauma.
Children and Youth Services minister Janis Tarchuk says there were no previous signs the two youth were violent; however, both had previous run-ins with the law, reports the Globe and Mail.
On Saturday, around 1:30 a.m., they were arrested after RCMP received a mischief complaint at a school located in Ardrossan, a village east of Edmonton. The boys were later charged with break and enter, possession of stolen property and mischief.
By 9:30 a.m. that same day, the teens were returned to Bosco Homes pending their court date in July, on conditions they follow a curfew. The pair were also not to leave the 49-hectare facility without being escorted by a staff member.
“The criteria to have these two youths detained in custody simply weren't there,” Cpl. Anderson said.
The two teens are to appear in court next Tuesday, in Sherwood Park.
According to NDP MLA Rachel Notley, the child welfare system in the province is in "crisis" due to lack of oversight and funding.