Police watchdog called in to investigate Kamloops death

IIO investigating death

The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) of BC is investigating Saturday's death on Clarke Street in Kamloops.

On July 31, Kamloops Mounties received a call from a woman who was concerned about the mental health of a male relative. Officers visited the man's home but reported being unable to locate him, according to a news release from the IIO. 

On Aug. 1, at 10:34 a.m., RCMP were called to a neighbouring home, where they found a different man with multiple stab wounds. The 39-year-old man, who has been identified as Kamloops resident Paul Samuel Whitten, was taken to hospital, where he died. 

At 2 p.m., the man whose relative had called police the day prior, was arrested in connection to the stabbing. That individual, Jason Michael Holm, has been charged with second-degree murder.

"The IIO is investigating the circumstances surrounding the police’s lack of success on July 31 in locating the man charged in the Aug. 1 stabbing," the police watch dog says in the release.

Anyone who has information about the incident is asked to call the IIO witness line at 1-855-446-8477.

In a statement sent out Sunday evening, Kamloops RCMP said that while charges have been laid, the investigation is not over. Police released a picture of Holm in an effort to garner tips from the public.

"We are asking for anyone who saw Mr. Holm in the downtown area of Kamloops on Saturday, Aug. 1, 2020, to please contact the RCMP," said Staff Sgt. Simon Pillay. 

Holm is 6'3 and weighs approximately 250 pounds. He is a white male with distinct face tattoos in the shape of different teardrops. He also has a red neck tattoo with a 'Cobra' emblem. 

RCMP say the incident is not connected to the drug trade or organized crime. Holm and Whitten were known to each other and there are no other suspects in this case.

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