December 9 2020 – Why didn’t the RCMP ‘lock the doors’ on Portapique info in April? By Paul Palango
On February 1, 2003, the space shuttle Columbia became the second NASA mission in less than 20 years to end in tragedy, when it disintegrated upon re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere, killing all seven astronauts aboard instantly. Just minutes after Mission Control confirmed the news, Entry Flight Director LeRoy Cain uttered his now-famous words: “Lock the doors”.
He followed that utterance with more specific instructions, that is, flight controllers, you’re not allowed to leave the building. Everybody preserve your data, write up your notes, there’s gonna be an investigation. An investigation whose findings might well preserve future lives. It’s incumbent on us all to arm the investigators with a true, detailed picture of what happened today. It’s not as if they can leave no stone unturned if they don’t have the stones to begin with.
It’s difficult not to think of Leroy “Lock the Doors” Cain’s words today. On Sunday, Frank published a story by Paul Palango, which brings to our attention the existence of an internal RCMP memo that brings into serious question the credibility of Canada’s national police force. The memo was first leaked to YouTuber Little Grey Cells, before coming to Palango and Frank last weekend.
Dated October 15, 2020 and headlined “MD-218 – Moratorium on the destruction of information involving Gabriel Wortman pertaining to the investigation of the mass shooting in Nova Scotia on 2020-04-18 and 2020-04-19,” the four-page document outlines, in exhaustive detail, the types of information ordered preserved for the benefit of various investigations, including the upcoming joint federal-provincial public inquiry. Sounds good, right? The RCMP is ensuring that everything possible is preserved for the inquiry, the civil lawsuits, the Canada Labour Code investigation, et al. And then you look at the date again. The mass-shooting happened in April. Why are these orders dated six months later?
December 21 2020 – ‘There were no police around’: what didn’t happen in Portapique By Paul Palango – December 21 2020
Around the time the first Mounties arrived at Portapique Beach on the night of April 18, five of the 13 victims that night were still alive or in the process of being killed, according to a reconstruction of events by Frank supported by the evidence of key witnesses and a family member of one of the victims.
According to the RCMP’s own recent admissions and statements to surviving members, the RCMP was reportedly on scene at 10:26 p.m. on April 18 and Wortman did not leave the area until 10:45 p.m., giving him almost 20 minutes to continue his spree. He was seen moving through a field in his replica police car with its lights off by a group of riders on ATVs who had come to investigate the fires.
There is further evidence that the RCMP did not protect or preserve crime scenes throughout the night, left bodies uncovered, evacuated only a handful of residents and did not call in enough reinforcements and investigators to deal with the nine different crime scenes.
In the eight months since Gabriel Wortman went on a rampage and began killing some of his neighbour’s that Saturday night, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Crown and governments have been extraordinarily vague about what took place. A public inquiry has been announced but there is no set date for when it will begin conducting hearings.
There have been at least three shifting accounts about when the first 911 call came in. The force eventually settled on 10:01 p.m. as the time of the first call, although unredacted documents state that neighbour Alan Griffon called at 9:15 p.m. after noticing a fire at Wortman’s residence at 200 Portapique Beach Road. There has been no explanation given about the difference in times.
December 29 2020 – A pair of Nuknuuk, and all kinds of questions – By Paul Palango
There are many mysteries and unknowns about what actually happened during the two Nova Scotia massacres, 13 people killed at Portapique on April 18 and nine more murdered the next day well after the RCMP had been called, responded and knew that Gabriel Wortman was the killer.
One piece of evidence that has gone virtually unnoticed has a Cinderella quality about it. It’s a pair of Nuknuuk slippers. Nuk nuks are Canadian designed sheepskin lined slippers that are a popular item at Costco. They sell for about $55 a pair, sometimes more. The pair in question was listed as a piece of evidence on page 87 of the contested informations to obtain a warrant, which various news organizations have spent a king’s ransom trying to find out what the police are hiding under the swimming pools of black ink.
On Page 87, the RCMP details items it found behind 123 Ventura Drive. The site is next to the Debert Diefenbunker, a tourist attraction that is a monument to the Cold War era. It was one of two nuclear fallout shelters constructed by then Prime Minister John Diefenbaker. The other one is near Carp, Ontario, west of Ottawa.
January 5 2021 – Portapique tapes: ‘All members stand by, allow risk manager to dispatch’ – By Paul Palango
The incident commander who was put in charge of the RCMP operation at Portapique Beach in the early morning hours of April 19 was a staff sergeant who for the past several years has been Nova Scotia’s head of traffic services, Frank Magazine has learned.
It was after midnight when Staff–Sgt. Jeffrey West took over the operation at the command centre which had been set up at Great Village fire hall around 10:30 p.m. the night before. Great Village is about a seven minute or so drive east of Portapique Beach Road. The information is contained in a recording of the switchover obtained by Frank this week.
Staff–Sgt. West’s first announcement that he was now in command went out on an encrypted radio channel, but the RCMP was having problems with reception on those channels that night.
Steve Halliday, another staff sergeant at the scene, radioed to West: “Can you re-announce your command? You were digital. No one copied.” West than replied on an analog channel, known as Pictou County Public Safety, that the Mounties began using about 30 minutes earlier.
“All units on Portapique call. Staff sergeant Jeff West on scene at the Great Village fire hall and I’m taking over command and control of this matter at this time. Staff sergeant West on scene and is now in control of this matter.”
January 7 2021 – Inside the chaos – By Paul Palango
An exchange between an Emergency Response Team officer and the RCMP incident commander in Portapique is one of several chilling moments to come across an open analog communications channel in the overnight hours of April 18 and 19.
“Oscar Charlie, Hotel One… We’ve just stopped here on the road, ah, we’re going to do a quick vitals on this deceased person on the side of the road just to make sure he’s deceased and not still alive.”
It was more than four and a half hours after RCMP received the first call that something was amiss in Portapique. The ERT officer, going by the callsign Hotel One, is addressing Staff-Sgt. Jeff West (Oscar Charlie), the long time head of traffic services for the RCMP in N.S. who was in command on the scene.
“Yah, confirmed, deceased,” the Mountie said of Corrie Ellison, 34 seconds later. “What road was that on, Jim,” a Mountie believed to be West asked.
Jim didn’t know. There are only three main roads in the survey and a couple of side roads but the Mounties were having extreme difficulty finding their way throughout the night. Since he couldn’t describe where the body was, the Mountie marked it with GPS co-ordinates. “N 45.397153,” Jim said. ”W 063.703527.”
The Mountie then walked across the road to where Lisa McCully’s body was lying on the front lawn. In earlier conversations the ERT members acknowledged that the first call to 911 came from “the teacher’s house” which they were now standing in front of. At 3:04 a.m., the Mountie reported to control: “Going to do a second vital on a second body out by the fence … over by the other body.”
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