Man, teen charged in Rustom Paclipan shooting death

A 16-year-old boy and 21-year-old man have been charged in connection to the shooting death of Rustom Vito Paclipan in Winnipeg on Sunday.
A 16-year-old boy and 21-year-old man have been charged in connection to the shooting death of Rustom Vito Paclipan outside a downtown Winnipeg nightclub. 1:49

A 16-year-old boy and 21-year-old man have been charged in connection to the shooting death of Rustom Vito Paclipan in Winnipeg on Sunday.

Both people are from Winnipeg, though the 21-year-old, Marcus Richard, was arrested in Sudbury, Ont.

City police said he was taken off an eastbound VIA passenger train at around 6 a.m. CT Thursday and returned to Winnipeg, where he was charged with first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder.

Police said they believe he was heading to Toronto.

The 16-year-old was arrested Wednesday in the area of Simcoe Street and Notre Dame Avenue in Winnipeg. He has been charged with manslaughter. He is in custody at the Manitoba Youth Centre. 

Both he and Richard have also been charged with a number of weapons-related offences.

The 23-year-old man was shot dead on Main Street, in front of the Opera Ultralounge nightclub early Sunday.

Two other men, aged 18 and 24, were also struck by bullets and received non-life-threatening injuries.

Gun was delivered to scene, say police

Police spokesperson Det-Sgt. Natalie Aitken insisted the gun was "absolutely" never inside the nightclub.

Police believe Richard instructed the teen to deliver the loaded firearm to the scene, she told reporters on Thursday.

"We know that there was not a firearm located within that nightclub, in that establishment, at that time and we do believe and know that that firearm was brought to the scene," Aitken said, adding that investigators used video surveillance footage to determine what happened.

She said police do not believe the shooting was a random act, though they are not certain Paclipan was the intended target of a gang dispute.

Aitken said Richard and the 16-year-old boy are known gang members. While Paclipan was not known to police, some of the people he was with are known members of a rival gang.

She said the investigation is ongoing but did not say whether any more arrests are anticipated.

Cancelled 911 call

Paclipan's death has prompted an internal investigation at the Winnipeg Police Service because of the way the 911 calls were handled.

For some reason, the original 911 call about a fight — made by Opera staff at 1:39:36 a.m. — was cancelled at 1:59:45 a.m. from within the 911 Communication Centre, according to police chief Devon Clunis.

Less than four minutes later, Paclipan was shot.

At 2:03:13 a.m., a second 911 call came in, this time about the shooting. Police arrived at 2:06:04 a.m. and assisted paramedics, who were already there.

Paclipan was rushed to hospital but was pronounced dead.

Clunis called for the internal investigation and has put the staff involved on administrative leave.

Paramedics praised

The head of the union representing the paramedics on duty the night of the shooting is praising their actions.

Chris Broughton said the two paramedics responded within four minutes to the shooting because they happened to be nearby and actually heard the shots. Then someone flagged them down.

"They definitely took on a great deal of risk responding, rendering care in this instance [before police were there to secure the scene]. It was highly-volatile and scary situation and they made that choice," Broughton said.

The two paramedics, who have been offered counselling and support services, are to be commended, he added.