Larry Hartwig was implicated in the 1990 freezing death of Neil Stonechild by a decade-later RCMP investigation. Here are his thoughts on that investigation:

Police officers have an obligation to follow the evidence wherever it may lead.  As soon as police officers begin to direct the evidence toward a preconceived conclusion, investigations go awry.  The RCMP had many opportunities to follow the evidence and to bring the investigation back on track, but they chose not to.  They merely wanted to establish that I was guilty of some kind of misconduct.   A good example is the statement I provided on May 18, 2000.  The officer seemed to be interested in only one thing: convincing me that I HAD encountered Neil Stonechild that night.  Although I categorically denied any wrongdoing whatsoever, the fact that I admitted to the possibility of encountering Neil that night, my statement was considered a “near confession” by the lead investigator who, within weeks, told a colleague that the ultimate goal in this case was to obtain a confession from me. (Based on the information provided to me by the RCMP officer, I concluded that Neil may well have lied about who he was.  The officer told me that the name I had in my notebook concerning this case belonged to Neil’s cousin and that I had challenged him about being Neil Stonechild.  I thought that perhaps I HAD encountered him, hadn’t recognized him, hadn’t figured out I was being lied to, and let him go without detecting the deception.  I was devastated because I thought I had failed to adequately preform my duties.)

But here is just one example of many indicating how far the RCMP were willing to go.  When Saskatoon Police Const. Ernie Louttit later found in his possession a copy of the original Saskatoon police report about the Stonechild case, he was shocked.  The report contained critical evidence.  Evidence that confirmed my partner and I were at the apartment speaking with the complainant during the time the RCMP thought we were driving Neil to the north end.  The report also contained Jason Roy’s original statement (not mentioning any police involvement in Neil’s death) that he would claim later was a lie.  Finally, evidence from a woman named Sharon who was at the party the night that Jason returned there, alone.  Sharon asked Jason where Neil was.  This is what the original investigator noted she said on the matter.  “She stated that that Jason Roy returned to her home later that night and said he and the decease had words and gone their separate ways.  She noted that Roy was intoxicated at this time and passed out at her home and woke up sick the next morning.”  (SPS file 97411/90)

The RCMP did not interview Sharon on this issue.  Instead, there were claims that she had info in which the SPS had assaulted Neil before his death.  Sharon stated that Neil had committed a break and enter in the area where she lived.  Neil ran into the house and hid in a freezer.  She claimed that members of the SPS entered the residence, found Neil, arrested him and beat him up.  Sharon claimed that there was a complaint laid against the arresting officers for police brutality and that a senior officer named “Mark or Mike” (not his real name) was involved.

The RCMP contacted, “Mark” who, for a period of time, worked internal investigations.   The investigators  told him of the incident and asked him if he could recall any such allegation.  “Mark” stated that he recalled no such event ever occurring.  The RCMP then asked him if it were POSSIBLE that I COULD HAVE been involved in such an event. “Mark” said he supposed it was  POSSIBLE.  The problem was that around the time of Neil’s death, I believe Mark was a Sergeant on C platoon.   If such an event occurred, it would have occurred when I was on days off, and NOT working.

The RCMP investigated Jason Roy’s allegation of misconduct by the SPS with the apparent intent to prove wrongdoing.

They did not investigate the actual circumstances surrounding Neil’s death.  They ignored some of that critical evidence.

The RCMP investigation and report was, at best, grossly biased; at worst, corrupt and potentially criminally corrupt.

This case needs to be re investigated, all the facts made public and  this matter put to rest, once and for all.