RCMP in Warman said Tuesday an operational glitch is to blame for a delay in notifying a father of his five-year-old's death. Johnathan Vetter died at his home in Saskatoon. His mother Kellie Johnson is charged with his murder.
On Saturday, January 4 at 10 a.m. CST, Saskatoon Police sent an electronic message through the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) system to the RCMP, asking them to notify Vetter's father.
RCMP Sergeant Mark Ochitwa said on weekends there are no clerical staff at the Warman detachment to receive that type of message. Normally an automatic forwarding to headquarters in Regina is set up prior to the weekend. But on Friday, January 3 it was not done.
"We try to do a good job here, and sometimes we make mistakes. And in this case, you know, timing was critical," Ochitwa said.
Saskatoon Police said they got a call from the father at midnight Saturday, and discovered RCMP had not yet told him about his son's death.
Ochitwa said Saskatoon Police called RCMP after midnight for an update on the notification of next of kin.
"So within the hour we had it completed, but this is when, if we go backwards, we discovered that the CPIC message had been sent," Ochitwa said.
Ochitwa said detachment staff have been told about the mistake so that it does not happen again.