Cop's son facing first degree murder charges after mass stabbing

Shawn Logan, Bill Kaufmann, Kevin Martin, Michael Platt and Rick Bell, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:44 AM ET

CALGARY — A senior Calgary police officer’s son has been arrested after five young adults were stabbed to death during a house party Tuesday, marking the worst mass killing in the city’s history.

The accused, still in hospital as of last night over concerns of his mental state, has been charged with five counts of first-degree murder.

“The scene was horrific,” said a visibly shaken police chief Rick Hanson, adding each victim was stabbed several times.

The killings happened at a house party celebrating Bermuda Shorts Day, an annual University of Calgary students’ union event.


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QMI Agency sources have confirmed the suspect in custody is 23-year-old Matt de Grood the son of Calgary Police Service Insp. Doug de Grood, a 33-year veteran.

de Grood worked at a local grocery store and was enrolled as a law student at the U of C.

He made a brief first court appearance late Tuesday — via a telephone call to a room at Rockyview General Hospital.

Justice of the Peace Scott Morgan read de Grood five charges of first-degree murder before asking the suspect if he was aware of what was occurring.

“I’m not sure,” said de Grood, who was in the custody of a police detective at the hospital.

Morgan proceeded to tell the accused the issue of his release will have to be dealt with in Court of Queen’s Bench as he had no authority to grant bail on a murder charge.

The accused said he’s being represented by defence counsel Allan Fay.

Fay, who was not with the accused for his appearance, later said it’s too early to determine whether he will be seeking de Grood’s release pending trial.

de Grood will appear next in provincial court on April 22.

The stabbing happened in a home in northwest Calgary, police spokeswoman Emma Poole said.

“We went to the home at 1:20 a.m. for reports of several injured people,” Poole said.

At the scene, three people were found dead, and two others with critical injuries were taken to hospital, where they later died.

Two of the dead have been identified by friends as Josh Hunter and Zackariah Rathwell.

Court documents show the other dead are Jordan Segura, Lawrence Hong and Kaitlin Perras.

“These were all good kids. They did nothing wrong,” said Hanson.

Hanson talked to Insp. de Grood just before a press conference.

“He is absolutely devastated. He is heartbroken, as is his wife,” he said.

Hanson said the suspect had been invited to the party and used a knife he found in the house.

A suspect fled the scene before police arrived, but officers were able to track him down a short distance away and arrested him with the help of the K9 unit.

Hours after the killings, a police officer retrieved what looked like a bloody kitchen knife dropped in a gutter about 40 metres south of the murder scene.

The University of Calgary released a statement Tuesday morning:

“The University of Calgary is mourning the loss of five young people killed early this morning in Brentwood. The identities of the deceased have not yet been confirmed by Calgary Police Services. Once details are confirmed by Calgary Police Services, the university will provide a further statement.”

The tragedy has doubled the number of homicides in Calgary in 2014 to 10.


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