Saskatoon

Surveillance video shows Richard Fernuk and accused killer together near St. Paul's Hospital: Sources

CBC News has learned that surveillance footage from a camera near St. Paul's Hospital shows Richard Fernuk with the man now accused of killing him.

Police canvassed 20th Street for footage in wake of Fernuk's murder

Security cameras are on many buildings and businesses around St. Paul's Hospital. (Dan Zakreski/CBC)

Richard Fernuk and his accused killer are seen together on surveillance video from a security camera near St. Paul's Hospital after the senior was released from the emergency department, CBC News has learned.

The 68-year-old was voluntarily discharged from the hospital at 3:30 a.m. CT on Aug. 2. Police discovered Fernuk's body in his Exhibition neighbourhood apartment 36 hours after he left hospital.

Leo Roy Daniels is charged with first-degree murder, robbery and unlawful confinement in connection with Fernuk's death. He returns to Saskatoon provincial court Aug. 27.

Police do not believe that Daniels and Fernuk knew each other.

Police canvassed the area around St. Paul's Hospital for video surveillance footage after discovering Fernuk's body. They released a still from a hospital camera that shows Fernuk walking out of the hospital after his discharge.

In an interview at the time, a police spokesperson said investigators were trying to piece together what happened in the 36 hours between Fernuk's discharge and the discovery of his body.

Police found Fernuk's body in his apartment several kilometres from the hospital. The surveillance footage showing Fernuk and Daniels together suggests he met his accused killer shortly after leaving St. Paul's.

Fernuk's family are questioning how he came to be released from the hospital.

Fernuk was 'very vulnerable,' says family

Leah Howie said that her father had a diagnosed mental illness and a heart condition. She wants to know to what extent hospital staff spoke with him before releasing him.

"Was his mental fitness or capacity assessed or considered when he was there and before he was released? His mental illness just adds another layer of vulnerability to what already a very vulnerable person," she said.

Their concern is that St. Paul's Hospital is in the heart of Pleasant Hill, a neighbourhood plagued by violence this year. It's enough of a concern that St. Paul's warned staff a week before Fernuk's death to be vigilant off hospital grounds.

"Are there discharge procedures?" Howie asked.

"Is there a special one for St. Paul's Hospital, given what has been going on in Pleasant Hill lately, how dangerous that area of Saskatoon seems to be?"

Richard Fernuk is the city's ninth homicide of the year.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dan Zakreski is a reporter for CBC Saskatoon.

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