Men charged in Prairie murders had gang ties: police
Published Tuesday, December 4, 2012 1:32PM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, December 4, 2012 3:36PM EST
Four men charged in connection with three murders in the Prairies, including a case where a man’s head was found in an Edmonton alley, had ties to an organized crime group called the White Boy Posse, according to police.
Investigators in Alberta and Saskatchewan announced Tuesday that all four men were arrested in Alberta after a joint investigation between officers in the two provinces.
Supt. Ted Miles, of the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team, said police had been investigating the White Boy Posse “for some time.”
Miles told reporters at a news conference that, “the arrests today on these homicides are just the front end of our organized crime investigation.”
Police said Randy James Wayne O’Hagan, 22, of Lloydminster, Alta., and Nikolas Jon Nowytzkyj, 32, of Wainwright, Alta., are both charged with first-degree murder in the death of Robert John Roth.
Roth’s partial remains were found in rural Ranfurly, about 100 kilometres outside Edmonton, on Oct. 20. The 54-year-old’s head was found in an Edmonton alley four days later.
O’Hagan and Nowytzkyj have also both been charged with offering an indignity to a human body in connection with Roth’s death.
Meanwhile, O’Hagan and Kyle Darren Halbauer, 22, also of Lloydminster, are charged with first-degree murder in the death of Bryan Gower.
Gower’s body was found Sept. 25 on a rural road near Kitscoty, Alta. O’Hagan and Halbauer are also charged with the attempted murder of a second man in that case.
The two men, along with Joshua Petrin, 29, of Edmonton, are also charged with first-degree murder in the death of Lorry Santos. The 35-year-old mother of four was shot dead in Saskatoon on Sept. 12 when she answered the door of her home.
Police said Tuesday they believe that in the Santos case, the suspects went to the wrong address.
“They took this woman away from her children, her husband,” Insp. Rick Penny, of the Saskatoon police service, told reporters. “Lorry Santos was totally innocent, just a by-product of the criminal activity these people were involved in.”
Saskatoon Police Chief Clive Weighill said the suspects “were way off” in their search for the house they were looking for.
“They had the wrong co-ordinates,” he said.
Santos was home on maternity leave from mining giant Cameco after having given birth to her youngest child in April.
Police said Tuesday that despite the arrests, they continue to investigate each case.
Anyone with information is asked to call their local police service or Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).
With files from The Canadian Press and CTV Edmonton’s Susan Amerongen
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