Teen charged with murder

Dakota Dillon Johnny, 19, charged with murder after apparent homicide.

PORT HARDY—A Port Hardy teen faces a charge of murder in the death late Sunday night of Cinday Scow, a 28-year-old Port Hardy woman.

Dakota Dillon Johnny, 19, has been charged with one count of murder in the beating death of Scow, RCMP announced Tuesday morning.

Johnny, who was charged during a phone interview with a Justice, has been remanded into custody and is scheduled to appear in person before a Justice tomorrow, RCMP said.

Johnny was arrested and taken into custody shortly before midnight Sunday after police were called to a vacant house at 115 Tsulquate Road, on the Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw Reserve, on a report of a woman needing medical assistance.

Scow, the victim of an apparent physical assault, was transported to Port Hardy Hospital, where she was declared dead shortly after 1 a.m. Monday. A forensic autopsy will be conducted by B.C. Coroner Service to determine a specific cause of death.

“The young guy they got, they said he confessed himself,” said Blanche Walkus, Scow’s mother, who spoke with some of the witnesses to Sunday’s incident. “He said he killed her.”

Walkus had been in touch with Scow earlier on Sunday and was expecting her to visit that evening. But the young woman never arrived.

“The first text I got, they said she was gone,” said Walkus. “When the ambulance finally came she wasn’t responding. They couldn’t do any more at the hospital; she was gone.”

Walkus and other family members and friends grieved in front of the band office Monday afternoon, directly across the street from the scene of the crime.

Across the street, police investigators examined evidence and interviewed neighbours as young students walked or rode bikes home from school on the road.

Others, including witnesses to Sunday night’s incident, met with counselors inside the band office.

“The ones that found her (Sunday) night are meeting right now,” said Walkus, seated in a chair and holding a photo with an image of a smiling Scow. “They’re going through trauma, there was so much blood.”

RCMP on Monday did not reveal details of the alleged killing or discuss a possible motive.

The investigation into the crime is ongoing and involves Port Hardy RCMP, the RCMP Forensic Identification Service, the BC Coroner Service and Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit. Investigators request anyone with information about this investigation contact Port Hardy RCMP at 250-949-6335 or anonymously through Crimestoppers, at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

RCMP Victim Services and crisis workers are also available to provide support for anybody in the community requesting help. To access this support, contact Port Hardy RCMP.