Two people found dead in Hull apartment; police rule out murder
Joanne Schnurr, CTV Ottawa
Published Monday, February 27, 2017 11:01PM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, February 28, 2017 6:35PM EST
A three-year-old boy is in care tonight, after Gatineau police found him beside the bodies of a young couple, one of them his parent. A man in his 30's and a woman in her 20's died yesterday. While the cause of death is not clear, police have already ruled out foul play.
Late this afternoon, police ruled out murder, based on initial results from the autopsies and “elements” they say found at the scene. That raises the possibility now of a drug overdose.
Nearly twenty-four hours after the initial call to the apartment, police were still guarding the scene of a tragedy that took two young lives and left a 3-year-old alone with the bodies.
“The poor child,” says Ashley Tugwood, a resident in the area, “being by himself inside there.”
Police were called to the apartment at 73 Rue Begin around 4 p.m. Monday after a 9-1-1 call indicating someone was dead inside. They discovered a man in his 30's and a woman in her 20's and someone else.
“With the bodies, we found a 3-year-old boy who was alive,” says Andrée East with Gatineau Police, “he was taken to the hospital where he was checked, he's fine. He's now being taken care of by child protection.”
Initial autopsy results show no signs of violence on the bodies. That, coupled with elements police say they found or saw at the scene have led them to rule out murder. That would have surprised Hakim Farhat, who often stays at the house across the street from where the couple was found.
“Every time I pass by, I see the woman playing with the kid or the guy having a beer or doing a BBQ,” he says, “They seem like a nice couple. Never saw anything unusual.”
That leaves a medical emergency possibly an overdose. A forensic autopsy will determine that.
Gatineau Police had been called to the residence in November of last year, to a different apartment, though, for a drug bust involving hashish, cocaine and marijuana. Whether this investigation had to do with drugs is still under investigation.
“Those drugs are more common every day so it could be one of the cause,” says Andrée East with Gatineau Police, “but we don't know for sure.”
For Véronique Lacourse, who was out walking with her sister and 3-year-old niece, it's a tragic loss regardless of the cause.
“That's destroying,” she says, “I mean, that's really sad. Poor family, eh?”
It's just shocking,” adds Alessandro Di Pietro, who lives in the area, “It shows that things that are not right are happening behind closed doors. It just rattles me.”
The families of the victims have requested that the names of the couple not be released.
The little boy will remain in care with Quebec’s Child Services until it's determined where it's safe for him to be placed.