2 more people charged in ‘horrendous, vile’ homicide of young father: RCMP

By | August 11, 2020

A group of four people charged with first-degree murder was caught on surveillance footage “casually getting some food” at a convenience store the day investigators believe Gerhard Reimer-Wiebe was killed and dumped in Portage la Prairie.

Bobbi Lynn Hall, 26, and Chelsea O’Hanley, 24, both of Winnipeg, are charged with first-degree murder in the death of Reimer-Wiebe, a 27-year-old father of two, RCMP said Tuesday. They were arrested Aug. 5 and 6, respectively.

Kyle Evan Sinkovits, 29, and Jonathan Bradley Narvey, 25, both from Winnipeg, were already charged with first-degree murder at the end of July.

All four were also charged with forcible confinement and indignity to a human body.

“This was a horrendous, vile and senseless crime,” RCMP Supt. Michael Koppang, head of major crimes, said Tuesday.

He hopes the first-degree murder charges bring some closure to the family.

“Without mincing words, it was particularly horrible, but the details will have to remain to be disclosed during the court proceedings.”

Koppang wouldn’t say what the relationship was between the accused and Reimer-Wiebe or anything about a motive, though he suggested they did know each other. 

Gerhard Reimer-Wiebe, 27, was found dead in Portage la Prairie on June 24. (Submitted by Terry Thiessen)

The charge for indignity to a dead human body is not common, Koppang said. Canada’s Criminal Code states that the indignity charge is laid when there is evidence someone “improperly or indecently interferes with or offers any indignity to a dead human body or human remains.”

The remains of Reimer-Wiebe were found June 24 on Baker Street in Portage la Prairie, about 85 kilometres west of Winnipeg. But four days earlier, there was a fire at an address in Winnipeg’s North End that later became part of the investigation.

RCMP believe he was killed at that home, on Alfred Avenue, and transported to Portage la Prairie, though Koppang would not say if the house is where the forcible confinement occurred.

He also wouldn’t comment on why the four accused may have been there before Reimer-Gerhard was killed, saying only that they had a connection to the house.

RCMP investigated what remained of this house that burned down on Alfred Avenue between Salter and Aikins streets. (Rachel Bergen/CBC)

The home on Alfred, between Salter and Aikins streets, was torn down after the fire for safety reasons. RCMP said last month they believe the fire was the result of arson and they were confident there was evidence in the wreckage that could help with the investigation.

No one has been charged in connection with the suspected arson.

RCMP said Tuesday they finished extracting and recovering debris from that site. Evidence was found and investigators believe more will be discovered as forensic specialists continue to sort through and examine the debris, Koppang said.

Investigators believe Reimer-Wiebe’s body was placed on Baker Street sometime early in the morning on June 20, the same day as the North End house fire and four days before he was found dead.

Investigators previously released pictures of four people of interest captured on surveillance footage in a Portage la Prairie convenience store on the morning of June 20. RCMP were inundated with more than 250 tips in two days.

RCMP released these four photos last month that were captured on surveillance footage in a Portage la Prairie convenience store on June 20, the day investigators believe Reimer-Wiebe was killed and his body was dropped off in the city. (Submitted by RCMP)

Koppang confirmed the people in the photos are the four who have been charged.

Reimer-Wiebe was originally from Bolivia. He moved to Steinbach, Man., and was living in Winnipeg before his death.

Investigators learned he had regularly stayed at homeless shelters in Winnipeg.

Police weren’t immediately able to identify his body when it was found in Portage la Prairie. Calls to the public for tips eventually helped RCMP determine it was Reimer-Wiebe. 

All four accused have already had days in court, and they remain in custody.

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