—Update: Sept. 9—
Nanaimo RCMP say they have arrested and charged a suspect in connection to the fatal stabbing on Sept. 5.
Officers say 19-year-old Mark Harrison has been charged with second-degree murder of the 29-year-old man.
Harrison was initially arrested on Sept. 5 based on descriptors but was released shortly after without charges, according to RCMP.
They say he was arrested late Thursday afternoon in downtown Nanaimo without incident.
Harrison appeared in Nanaimo Provincial Court earlier Friday morning. He is set to appear again on Tuesday, September 20.
Nanaimo RCM closed the Maffeo Sutton playground to the public while they investigate a stabbing that happened on Labor Day.
At around 11:30pm, a report came into the RCMP of a group of youths who were intimidating a security guard along the waterfront in downtown Nanaimo. The RCMP say the suspects fled, and officers came upon a stabbing victim and his friend.
EHS attended and transported the stabbed 29 year-old man to the Nanaimo hospital where he was pronounced deceased. The other man, 22 years-old, was treated for the effects of the bear spray and did not require a trip to the hospital.
“Investigators do not believe there was any connection between the victim and suspects prior to the incident,” said Constable Gary O’Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP.
Officers located and arrested a 19-year-old man nearby without incident. With the assistance of Police Dog Services, a 17-year-old male was also located a short time later. Both suspects remain in police custody and the third individual has been identified but currently has not been located. No formal charges have been laid.
While the playground is shut down, the washrooms will remain open. The day ferry to Saysutshun (Newcastle Island) has been temporarily relocated to the public crab dock. Investigators will be examining the area for any forensic evidence related to the investigation.
Anyone with information on the incident is asked to call the Nanaimo RCMP on their non-emergency line at 250-754-2345, and quote file # 2022-31326.