REGINA – Lorne Pavelick waited 6,246 days to learn who may be responsible for killing his son at a high school party.
Pavelick read out that number Tuesday, after RCMP announced a second-degree murder charge 17 years after the death of Misha Pavelick.
The father said it has been a long wait, but he remains grateful.
“We, as family, we realize this is not the end — just the beginning of the end,” he told a news conference.
“And it renews our hope for justice for our dear Misha.”
Sgt. Major Darryl Milo, the officer responsible for Saskatchewan RCMP’s historical case unit, said Mounties can’t name the accused because he was a youth at the time. He is now 34.
Officers have been investigating Pavelick’s death since he was killed over the May long weekend in 2006.
Pavelick,19, was stabbed when a fight broke out at a high school camping party near Regina Beach, north of the provincial capital.
“The question — who killed Misha Pavelick? — has haunted many as family, friends, the public and our own investigators sought justice,” Milo said. “Since then, investigators have committed to working diligently to make an arrest on this case, lay charges and hold someone accountable for Misha’s death.”
Milo couldn’t speak to the evidence that led to the charge, noting it’s now before the courts.
He said there were about 200 people at the party and officers have conducted 200 formal interviews.
The investigation involved more than 100 officers from across the province, Milo said, adding Alberta RCMP also assisted.
In 2021, Saskatchewan RCMP had created a podcast about the case in an effort to receive more tips.
Milo said the podcast led to 20 additional tips, as people with knowledge of the case became more willing to share information after it aired.
“There were younger people there,” he said of those at the party. “It’s possible that maybe some of them were reluctant to provide information when they themselves were 17 or 18 years old. And now 17 years later, maybe (they) have more sense of urgency or inclination to do what they feel is right.”
Milo said the accused was arrested Saturday. He appeared in court Monday and is to make a second court appearance on July 17.
He said the family’s co-operation has been integral.
“I cannot begin to imagine how difficult these last 17 years have been as you waited for answers following the tragic loss of Misha,” he said.
He also thanked officers for not giving up despite the passage of time.
“The public will now be able to see this case and it’s details unfold through the court process,” Milo said.
Lorne Pavelick thanked investigators.
“They never stopped communicating with us, sharing what they could,” the father said. “So many of them offering their commitment, courage, humility and sometimes frustration — but only rarely.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on June 27, 2023.