Trudeau meets with fam­i­lies of fallen N.B. of­fi­cers

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Prime Min­is­ter Justin Trudeau met with fam­i­lies of fallen Fred­er­ic­ton po­lice of­fi­cers Sun­day, and said he told their chil­dren some­thing he had learned: mourn­ing is made a lit­tle bit eas­ier when you’ve got the whole coun­try’s sup­port.Trudeau and his son Hadrien went to Fred­er­ic­ton’s po­lice head­quar­ters to lay flow­ers at the grow­ing memo­rial for two of­fi­cers and two other vic­tims of Fri­day’s vi­o­lence.Trudeau had planned to march in Sun­day’s Pride pa­rade in Fred­er­ic­ton, but his plans changed af­ter the shoot­ing at a north-side apart­ment com­plex that killed Bob­bie Lee Wright, Don­nie Ro­bichaud, Const. Robb Costello and Const. Sara Burns.Speak­ing to re­porters, he ap­peared to al­lude to the pub­lic sup­port he re­ceived af­ter the death of his own fa­ther, the late prime min­is­ter Pierre Trudeau.“I talked to their kids and high­lighted some­thing that I had ex­pe­ri­enced (which) was when you have a whole com­mu­nity, and in­deed a whole coun­try sup­port­ing you through ter­ri­ble grief, it ac­tu­ally does make it a lit­tle bit eas­ier, not much eas­ier but a lit­tle bit eas­ier,” he said.A sub­dued Pride pa­rade went ahead Sun­day af­ter­noon, with Mayor Mike O’Brien call­ing it a way for Fred­er­ic­ton’s res­i­dents to be­gin heal­ing.“It’s a way for our com­mu­nity to start re­build­ing our faith in com­mu­nity and hav­ing a cel­e­bra­tion,” O’Brien said Satur­day. “There’s a way to cel­e­brate even in the midst of this grief.”It be­gan with a mo­ment of si­lence, and pa­rade or­ga­niz­ers said in a Face­book post that they were march­ing “in ap­pre­ci­a­tion of our Chief of Po­lice Leanne Fitch, the first re­spon­ders and all the of­fi­cers who risk their lives on a daily ba­sis to keep us safe.”The force an­nounced Sun­day that a reg­i­men­tal fu­neral “to cel­e­brate the lives of our fallen mem­bers” will be held on Satur­day at the Aitken Univer­sity Cen­tre at the Univer­sity of New Brunswick.The Fred­er­ic­ton Po­lice Force’s pub­lic in­for­ma­tion of­fi­cer, Aly­cia Bartlett, said in a re­lease that a book of con­do­lences will be avail­able to the pub­lic in the coun­cil cham­bers of Fred­er­ic­ton City Hall on Monday.There has been an out­pour­ing of grief in the small city, with res­i­dents stop­ping by po­lice head­quar­ters to drop off flow­ers, notes and teddy bears for the fallen of­fi­cers.“I want to ex­tend my sin­cere thanks to all of you on be­half of the Fred­er­ic­ton Po­lice Force,” Fitch said in a writ­ten state­ment Sun­day. “Your sup­port, as demon­strated by the flow­ers and cards that are left in front of the po­lice sta­tion, is ap­pre­ci­ated by us all.“Ev­ery­one in our com­mu­nity is hurt­ing with the deaths of four of our cit­i­zens, but the sup­port of the com­mu­nity to our fallen of­fi­cers the two oth­ers killed, and all of their fam­i­lies and friends, is ap­pre­ci­ated.”On Sun­day evening, Trudeau was to at­tend what was de­scribed as a “Fred­er­ic­ton Pride so­cial event” at a lo­cal pub.Asked by re­porters ear­lier in the day about po­ten­tial new gun laws, Trudeau said it wasn’t the time to be talk­ing about that, but al­luded to var­i­ous gun tragedies in­clud­ing the shoot­ing in Toronto’s Greek­town that left two peo­ple dead and 13 oth­ers in­jured.“Ob­vi­ously, I think there is a re­flec­tion go­ing on around the coun­try, around how we can en­sure our com­mu­ni­ties are safer, in­di­vid­u­als are safer, our po­lice of­fi­cers are safer,” he said.“I think there are nat­u­ral con­ver­sa­tions to be had around now: Do we need to take fur­ther steps, do we need to go fur­ther? And th­ese are things we are talk­ing with Cana­di­ans about, we are talk­ing with ex­perts about and we are re­flect­ing on it.”Costello, 45, was a 20-year po­lice vet­eran, while Burns, 43, had been an of­fi­cer for two years.Ro­bichaud, 42, had be­gun dat­ing Wright, 32, ear­lier this month.Ten chil­dren lost a par­ent Fri­day morn­ing. Burns was mar­ried with three chil­dren, while Costello was a fa­ther of four, and Ro­bichaud had two teenage sons and an older daugh­ter.Matthew Vin­cent Ray­mond, 48, has been charged with four counts of first-de­gree mur­der and is set to ap­pear in court on Aug. 27.Ray­mond was shot by po­lice on Fri­day and was still be­ing treated in hos­pi­tal for his in­juries as of Satur­day. Po­lice have not dis­closed the sever­ity of his in­juries.Two in­ves­ti­ga­tors with Nova Sco­tia’s Se­ri­ous In­ci­dent Re­sponse Team, a po­lice watch­dog agency, were dis­patched to Fred­er­ic­ton on Fri­day to in­ves­ti­gate po­lice in­volve­ment in Ray­mond’s in­juries.Po­lice did not say if the sus­pect and vic­tims were known to each other, and a mo­tive was not yet known.Both Ro­bichaud and Ray­mond were res­i­dents of the com­plex, but lived in dif­fer­ent build­ings, ac­cord­ing to the land­lord.

Prime Min­is­ter Justin Trudeau and his son Hadrien, 4, place flow­ers out­side the po­lice sta­tion in Fred­er­ic­ton on Sun­day in mem­ory of two of­fi­cers killed Fri­day.

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