Calgary

Family of homicide victim pleads for answers as second man charged with murder

The family of a man found dead in a Calgary house fire in February are pleading for answers as police announced they've charged a second man in case.

'He was a fun loving and caring person and did not deserve this end,' brother says

The Calgary Police Service has charged a second person in the death of Chad Kowalchuk, who was discovered deceased inside a Douglasdale home following a house fire in February. (Bryan Labby/CBC)

The family of a man found dead in a Calgary house fire earlier this year is pleading for answers as police announced Thursday they've charged a second man in the case.

Chad Kowalchuk, 53, was found after firefighters responded to a residence in the southeast neighbourhood of Douglasdale on Feb. 18. The discovery sparked what police called a complex investigation.

On Thursday, Kowalchuk's family urged anyone with any information about what happened to step forward. 

"It's been nearly two months since the senseless and tragic murder of my brother, Chad, and our family has several unanswered questions," Dean Kowalchuk told reporters at a media briefing. 

"Chad came from a family that loved and adored him very much. He was a fun loving and caring person and did not deserve this end. And we need justice for Chad. He deserves justice. And his family needs closure."

The plea came as police also announced they've charged a second man in relation to the discovery of Kowalchuk's body at a home in the 100 block of Douglas Ridge Green S.E. 

Investigators said Ronald Leon Abraham, 41, of Calgary, was arrested last Thursday and charged with first-degree murder. They said Abraham is in custody and is set to appear in court on April 22.

Last month, police arrested Justin Angus Boucher, 30, of Calgary. He has been charged with first-degree murder and arson charges. His next court appearance is set for April 28.

"We continue to examine evidence related to the murder of Chad Kowalchuk and believe there are a number of people who attended the residence in the days prior to the fire," said Staff Sgt. Sean Gregson.

Gregson said investigators believe the fire didn't start the same day Kowalchuk was killed.

"That's why we're asking people to come forward with some information,he said.

The staff sergeant said police are also working to determine the relationship between Kowalchuk and the accused men. The fire has complicated the investigation, he said.

"We believe that that was probably an attempt to conceal evidence," Gregson said.

"But we want to make sure that we've done a thorough investigation and uncovered all avenues. So we're ensuring that we leave no stone unturned."

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