‘Blunt-impact trauma’ led to death of girl found on Samson Cree Nation: Edmonton police

Three days after police discovered the human remains of a missing eight-year-old were found on Samson Cree Nation, the Edmonton Police Service said an autopsy has confirmed how she died.

In a news release issued Tuesday, police said an autopsy concluded the girl died of “blunt-impact trauma” and that she was the victim of a homicide.

Three people have been charged in connection with the girl’s death. Global News is not identifying the child, her family, or the accused due to a publication ban.

Charges were laid in connection with the case late last month. A 27-year-old woman has been charged with first-degree murder and offering an indignity to a dead body in connection with the death. A 25-year-old man has been charged with accessory after the fact to murder and causing indignity to a dead body and a 66-year-old has been charged with accessory to first-degree murder and offering an indignity to a dead body.

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Police said investigators believe that “all three of the accused were known to the girl” but have yet to release what they believe happened or what motivated the crimes.

The case did not start out as a homicide investigation. On April 24, police were called to check on the welfare of a child at a home in the area of 87 Avenue and 165 Street in west Edmonton.

“Upon arrival, police were unable to locate the child and began investigating,” the EPS said. “Due to the circumstances, (the EPS) homicide section took over the investigation and organized a co-ordinated search involving multiple EPS units and other external agency partners, including the RCMP, to search for the girl’s remains.”

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The girl’s remains were later discovered at an undisclosed location on Samson Cree Nation, which is located about a one-hour drive south of Edmonton.

After learning on Friday that the girl’s disappearance was being investigated by homicide detectives, the girl’s grandmother said she was struggling to cope with the news.

“I’ve heard of similar situations on the news… but I just never thought…” she said, unable to finish her thought.

“This was a fluid and fast-moving investigation, and we’d like to thank the family for their co-operation as they navigate this tragic and unfathomable loss,” Staff Sgt. Colin Leathem with the EPS homicide section said on Friday.

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— with files from Karen Bartko, Global News

&© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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