A police document outlines the RCMP’s initial theory of events surrounding the death of Colten Boushie, 22, who was shot and killed Aug. 9 on a ranch owned by Gerald Stanley.
Stanley is charged with second-degree murder in Boushie’s death.
The Globe and Mail reported Friday it obtained the document police filed with a judge to get a warrant to search the Stanley property following Boushie’s death.
Called an Information to Obtain a warrant (ITO), the document is meant solely to outline police’s theory of what happened.
None of the claims have been proven in court.
“There’s a lot going on here that I think people may not have known from the first stories that emerged, and we see this all the time in these kinds of cases,” said Joe Friesen, the Globe and Mail journalist who reported on the documents, during an appearance on Gormley.
Friesen’s article laid out the theory of what happened as follows, based on the ITO and interviews with Boushie’s family:
On Aug. 9. Boushie and his friends left the Red Pheasant First Nation for a day of drinking and swimming in the river near the small town of Maymont, Sask. They were riding in a grey 2003 Ford Escape owned by Kiora Wuttunee. Bousie’s girlfriend.
At about 5:30 p.m. they drove onto the Stanley farm. Police believe they had previously been to a neighbouring farm where someone in the group allegedly tried to steal vehicles and items. Friesen reported police believe a rifle was used in the effort to break into one of the vehicles, possibly as a prying or smashing implement, causing the stock and trigger to break off from the barrel.
Boushie’s family told Friesen the Escape had a flat tire, and the group was likely looking for help. In the Globe story, a police officer is reported to have stated the Escape had only a rim on the front drivers’ side.
Sheldon Stanley, Gerald Stanley’s son, told police he and his father were working on a fence when the Escape pulled onto the property, according to Friesen’s story.
Friesen wrote that Sheldon told police he saw the Escape stop near a pickup truck parked in the yard and that he saw a young man get out of the Escape and go into the pickup. Friesen reported that it is almost certain the young man Sheldon Stanley saw go into the pickup was not Boushie.
According to the Globe article, Sheldon heard the family’s ATV start up shortly after he saw the unidentified young man go into the pickup. He said this is when he and his father started to yell, prompting the young man to jump back into the Escape. Sheldon told police the Escape swerved towards him. He said he was carrying a hammer, and used it to smash the Escape’s windshield as it reversed. At this time, Gerald Stanley reportedly kicked in the vehicle’s tailight.
Sheldon Stanley is reported to have told police the Escape then pulled forward and collided with another vehicle parked on the Stanley’s driveway. At this point, he told police two men got out of the Escape and ran away, leaving Boushie, Wuttunee and another woman behind. From there, Sheldon Stanley allegedly ran back into the house to grab truck keys, and told police he heard two gunshots while he was inside, followed by a third as he stepped out.
The Globe article alleges Gerald Stanley told police he ran to a nearby shed after he kicked out the Escape’s tailight, where he grabbed and loaded one of two handguns registered to him. He allegedly told police he came out of the shed and fired two shots into the air.
Wuttunee is quoted as having told officers Boushie was with her in the backseat of the Escape, and that he climbed into the driver’s seat after they struck the parked car in an effort to drive away, but the Escape wouldn’t move. She reportedly told police Stanley walked up to the drivers’ side window and fired a third shot into the back of Boushie’s head.
Friesen’s article states part of the ITO included a forensics officer confirming the bullet which killed Boushie hit him in the back of the head, just behind his left ear.
Sheldon Stanley reportedly told police after he heard the third shot, he saw his father standing by the Escape’s driver’s side window looking sick. He allegedly told officers his father said he had been trying to scare the youths away when the gun “just went off.”
Friesen, based on information from the ITO, reported that Gerald Stanley acknowledged during an interview with RCMP that he walked up the drivers’ side door of the Escape and shot Boushie in the back of the head.
Wuttunee and the other girl are reported to have opened the Escape’s driver’s side door to try and tend to Boushie, his lifeless body is reported to have fallen out of the driver’s seat onto the ground.
Friesen wrote that both Sheldon Stanley and his mother, Leesa Stanley, told police that at this point, they saw the barrel of a .22-calibre bolt action rifle lying near Boushie’s body, with the trigger and stock missing. Police reportedly found a bullet in the chamber, but did not find any spent casings to suggest the weapon was fired.
Friesen reported that Leesa Stanely told police she didn’t see the shooting as she was mowing the lawn a short distance away. She reportedly told police she approached the two young women in the aftermath and that one of them punched her, knocking her to the ground. She reportedly told officers the woman who struck her backed off when her son yelled for her to stop.
In his article, Friesen stressed nothing contained in the ITO has been proven in court. While he wrote that the law requires such documents to be ‘full, frank and fair,’ but aren’t required to include information contrary to the police’s initial theory.