In­ves­ti­ga­tors seek­ing mo­tive in slay­ing of cops and civil­ians

Edmonton Sun - - FRONT PAGE - THE CANA­DIAN PRESS — By Michael Tut­ton in Hal­i­fax with files from Steve Hen­ni­gar in Toronto.

FRED­ER­IC­TON — the new re­la­tion­ship had been an­nounced with a lit­tle blue heart posted on Face­book, but just days later a gun­man in an apart­ment win­dow brought it to a sud­den and vi­o­lent end.

For close friends and rel­a­tives of Bob­bie Lee Wright, 32, and don­ald adam Ro­bichaud, 42, the shoot­ing deaths came as a stun­ning blow, end­ing the lives of two quiet peo­ple pre­par­ing for an out­door ad­ven­ture to­gether.

“they were go­ing to go zip lining af­ter work. they were pack­ing up the car be­fore work and that’s when they got shot,” said Melissa Ro­bichaud, don­ald’s wife, from whom he re­cently sep­a­rated.

Soon af­ter, two of­fi­cers from the Fred­er­ic­ton po­lice force were also gunned down as they re­sponded to the shots be­ing fired in the north end of Fred­er­ic­ton.

“all four of those peo­ple were loved, very loved,” said Ro­bichaud.

the 36-year-old res­i­dent of Traceyville, N.B., said in a tele­phone in­ter­view she’d been with her hus­band 22 years.

Ro­bichaud has two teenaged sons, Zakkery and draiden, and a daugh­ter, Chloe, and is sur­vived by his mother Jean, she said. the chil­dren’s names are tat­tooed on his neck.

“He was a good man,” said Ro­bichaud, adding that he’d worked hard as a com­mer­cial painter and later as an au­to­body me­chanic to sup­port his fam­ily.

He had a pas­sion for mu­sic, play­ing bass, drums and singing across new Brunswick un­til arthri­tis slowed the pace of his play­ing, she said.

In ad­di­tion, he’d ac­quired a pas­sion in re­cent years for rid­ing his Har­ley-david­son, and he and his wife would tour the re­gion wear­ing the clas­sic leather gear.

“He loved mu­sic. He loved his Har­ley-david­son. He loved his three chil­dren. He had their names on his neck,” said Sean Cal­la­han, a cousin, in an in­ter­view Satur­day.

Rel­a­tives of Bob­bie Lee Wright were un­avail­able for com­ment on Satur­day, as a cousin said they were strug­gling with in­tense grief.

How­ever, close friends said they could not un­der­stand why any­one would want to hurt a woman they’d known as quiet and car­ing.

amanda Lee Leighton, 32, said Wright was a friend who in their teenage years came to visit and com­fort her as she was griev­ing the death of her own mother.

news of her friend’s death had kept her up through the night.

“It’s heart­break­ing and I think I’m still in shock,” she said in an in­ter­view about the friend she cel­e­brated birth­days with in Wood­stock, n.b.

“I hardly slept last night think­ing about why this would hap­pen to her and won­der­ing how any­one could take a hu­man life.”

In­ves­ti­ga­tors said dur­ing a news con­fer­ence Satur­day they didn’t know if there was a con­nec­tion be­tween the man ac­cused in the deaths, Matthew Ray­mond, 48, and ei­ther of the civil­ian vic­tims.

How­ever, both Ro­bichaud and Cal­la­han con­firmed that Ro­bichaud and Wright had re­cently started their re­la­tion­ship.

“It was about a week and a half, two weeks. they had been talk­ing on the In­ter­net and had their first date last Fri­day. Be­fore that it was on­line,” said Ro­bichaud.

Friends of Wright say they’ll miss the in­ti­macy of get to­geth­ers to catch up on one an­other’s news, in what was a close cir­cle of friends who’d bonded in ju­nior high school.

“I feel hor­ri­ble that this could hap­pen to one of the nicest girls I had ever known,” said Leighton. “Lit­er­ally, she never fought with any­one or dis­liked any­one.”

Leighton said in re­cent years she’d had less con­tact with Wright, as they were both busy in their lives in Fred­er­ic­ton.

But when she and a cir­cle of friends who grew up in north­west­ern new Brunswick got to­gether, they re­mained close.

Ray­mond is ex­pected to ap­pear in court on aug. 27.

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