A 25-year-old man from Saskatoon is dead after a violent beating at a Manitoba bowling alley over the weekend.
Family said the victim, Zachary Straughan, died Monday afternoon after being put on life support at the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg.
He leaves behind three children and a girlfriend who is eight-weeks pregnant.
Police were called to Valley Bowling Lanes in Winkler, located 116 kilometres southwest of Winnipeg, shortly before midnight Saturday.
Officers said the fight broke out after an argument between the two men, both from Saskatoon as part of a work crew, over unpaid debt.
Family said the amount was $16.
“Our hearts go out to the family whose loved one was the victim of a senseless assault Saturday night,” said Rick Hiebert, Winkler chief of police, in a news release Sunday.
Straughan was beaten unconscious with a pool cue.
The first police officer arriving on scene immediately began CPR, while others began to search for the suspect.
According to police, a witness called 911 and followed the fleeing assailant, leading officers directly to his location at a 7-Eleven where the man was arrested minutes after the attack.
Justin Leslie Bird, 29, remains in custody at the Winnipeg Remand Centre.
His next court appearance is scheduled for Morden Provincial Court on Oct. 11.
Investigators are in discussion with the Crown’s office regarding the possibility of upgrading charges from aggravated assault.
Police said the victim’s family has graciously consented to Straughan being considered for the organ donation program in hopes it might save the life of someone in need.