Somebody knows something: Calgary police look for info on Colton Crowshoe killing 8 years later

The unsolved killing of a Calgary teen in 2014 has homicide detectives and the victim’s family looking to the public for answers.

Colton James Crowshoe, 18, left a house party in the northeast community of Abbeydale on July 4, 2014.

Calgary Police Service investigators believe he was killed shortly after leaving the party.

Crowshoe’s body was discovered in a retention pond near Stoney Trail and 16th Avenue N.E. three weeks later.

Members of Colton Crowshoe’s family joined Calgary police officers on Thursday, asking for the public’s help to solve his killing. (Dave Gilson/CBC News)

An autopsy confirmed his death to be a homicide, and police say they believe there are people in the community who have information that could help solve the case.

Investigators say they’ve spoken with several witnesses but believe there are still people who have not come forward, including potential witnesses who were at the house party.

“For almost eight years, individuals in our community have stayed silent about Colton’s death,” said Staff Sgt. Sean Gregson of the CPS homicide unit. 

Gregson said CPS is committed to finding answers for the family but said police need help “to put the final pieces together.”

Investigators are asking anyone who was at the house party or who has since learned information about his death to come forward. 

Police say even if members of the public believe their information isn’t relevant or is already known by investigators, they should contact CPS.

Colton Crowshoe’s family released photos, including this one, in the hope that someone who knows what happened the night he was killed will come forward. Crowshoe was last seen alive on July 4, 2014. (Submitted by Crowshoe family )

Failures in police investigation 

When Crowshoe didn’t come home after the house party, his family begged police to treat his disappearance as a missing-person case. But but that did not happen for nearly three weeks.

The family felt CPS didn’t take Crowshoe’s disappearance seriously because he was a young Indigenous man who’d had interactions with police.

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) launched a 32-month investigation.

The civilian oversight agency looks into police incidents that result in serious injury or death as well as allegations of police misconduct.

In this case, no charges were laid. ASIRT did find mistakes had been made during the investigation, although the problems were not related to racism, said director Sue Hughson at the time.

ASIRT also called the delay to treat Crowshoe’s disappearance as a missing-person case “unacceptable.”

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