Sierra Leone Telegraph: 7 February 2021:
A 27-year-old man from the Sierra Leone community in Winnipeg, Canada, is in police custody and facing second-degree murder charges in connection with a January 28, 2021 assault on Craig Street in Winnipeg.
Issa Pa Musa was arrested last Monday evening in the death of Wendell John Boulanger, 44. Prior to his arrest, Musa was the subject of a Canada-wide warrant, as police warned members of the public not to approach him.
Police found Boulanger suffering from serious injuries on 28th of January 2021, after responding to a report of an assault.
Officers provided emergency first aid and the victim was rushed to hospital in critical condition. He later died of his injuries.
Court records show Issa Pa Musa, 27, was acquitted after trial last year of housebreak, entry and robbery, and other offences, after a judge ruled he had offered a “plausible” explanation for his presence at the McGee Street home.
Issa Pa Musa (Photo) is not new to the Canadian criminal justice system. Court heard testimony at trial that Musa and two other masked men broke into the house om 3rd of November 2018, and threatened occupants with a sword, before robbing them of property and cash.
A male resident at the house testified he spotted police through a window and signalled for help. As two of the robbers fled, the man and another resident grabbed Musa and hit him with a baseball bat, court was told.
Musa testified, telling court he went to the house looking to buy marijuana. He said when he knocked on the door, it was answered by an angry male who directed racist insults at him, sparking a fight. Musa said the man hit him in the face with a baseball bat and held him for police.
Justice Colleen Suche said inconsistencies in the evidence and the prosecution’s decision not to call two female residents as witnesses “left many, many questions unanswered that I simply can’t resolve.”
While she could not say she believed all of Musa’s testimony, Suche said she was left with a reasonable doubt as to his guilt.
In 2017, Musa was sentenced to six months less a day time served and one-year probation, after he struck two women with beer bottles at a house party.
Court heard Musa had become angry, believing partygoers had been stealing his drinks, when he threw a full beer at one woman, hitting her on the shoulder, and another at a woman’s face, breaking her nose. When other partygoers started yelling at him, Musa pulled out a machete and fled.
A sentence of six months or more would have triggered automatic deportation proceedings. Court heard Musa and his family immigrated to Canada from Sierra Leone in 2013.
Upon his release, Musa told court he hoped to spend time with his new-born son, go back to school, and “and stay out of trouble.”
Police issued a Canada-wide warrant for Musa’s arrest, after 44-year-old Wendell John Boulanger was found seriously injured just over a week ago – January 28, inside a Craig Street home. Boulanger was taken to hospital and later died.
Source/Credit: 40 Acres, Winnipeg, Canada; GlobalNews – Winnipeg FreePress