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Man accused of killing Manitoba woman had statutory release revoked in 2019

Kevin Charles Queau has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of Crystal Saunders in 2007. (RCMP - image credit)
Kevin Charles Queau has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of Crystal Saunders in 2007. (RCMP - image credit)

The man accused in the death of a Manitoba woman in 2007 had his statutory release revoked in 2019 after being found to be at risk to reoffend.

The Parole Board of Canada ruled Kevin Charles Queau presented an "undue risk to society" after the man violated special conditions imposed on his release, documents obtained by the CBC News show.

Queau had been sentenced to five years of prison time in August 2015 after pleading guilty to the aggravated sexual assault of one woman, and the aggravated assault of another in B.C. for incidents in the two years prior.

He was released in December 2018 after serving two-thirds of his sentence, but the parole board revoked his statutory release on Sep. 18, 2019.

Queau completed his federal sentence on Aug. 20, 2020.

Earlier this week, Manitoba RCMP announced Queau had been arrested in Vancouver and charged with second-degree murder in the death of Crystal Saunders, who was last seen by Winnipeg police getting into a vehicle on a street corner on April 18, 2007.

Saunders' remains were found the next morning near St. Ambroise, on the south side of Lake Manitoba. She was 24 years old. RCMP credited a DNA match for linking Queau with the remains of Saunders, who officials say identified as Métis.

Crystal Saunders's body was found in a ditch north of St. Ambroise, near Lake Manitoba, on April 19, 2007. Her case, like hundreds of others, remains unsolved.
Crystal Saunders's body was found in a ditch north of St. Ambroise, near Lake Manitoba, on April 19, 2007. Her case, like hundreds of others, remains unsolved.

Crystal Saunders's body was found in a ditch north of St. Ambroise, near Lake Manitoba, on April 19, 2007. (Submitted by Winnipeg Police Service)

The parole board's decision said a specialized sex offender assessment done in October 2015 — whose findings were later backed in a March 2017 update — indicated Queau was at a moderate to high risk to reoffend and the same for sexual reoffending.

The board imposed special conditions on his statutory release, including not to consume drugs or alcohol, avoid drinking establishments, report relationships, avoid sex trade workers, and internet and pornography restrictions.

The board said in June 2019, an intimate partner reported she ended her relationship with Queau after he added a person on social media who was allegedly a sex trade worker.

A warrant for Queau was then issued and he was arrested. The board said he later admitted in interviews to accessing social media, lying about his relationship struggles and contacting other women.

Offenders on statutory release must report to their parole officer on a regular basis. The board said Queau failed to report any of these problems to them.

"Your parole officer felt you changed your version of events and modified your answers to avoid responsibility," the board said.

"Further information ... outlines your use and access to multiple cell phones, extensive access and use of the internet, and accessing dating and escort sites where you talked to other women."

Queau's family denied Métis heritage

Queau attended high school and post-secondary school in Winnipeg, but he has also lived or worked elsewhere in provinces outside Manitoba.

The board said it considered his cultural background and systemic factors in making its review.

It said Queau identified as Indigenous even though his family denied their Métis heritage.

"You do acknowledge that following a family suicide your parents became very strict with you. You were sexually assaulted by a male relative and at age 17 you left the family home. You say you felt isolated within your own family which is probably due to disconnection and isolation from your Indigenous background, supports and culture," the board said.

But the decision added there was no information on file connecting the family to residential schools, and that he had been mostly raised in a "positive family unit."

RCMP charged Kevin Charles Queau with second-degree murder in the death of Crystal Saunders on Jan. 27.
RCMP charged Kevin Charles Queau with second-degree murder in the death of Crystal Saunders on Jan. 27.

RCMP charged Queau with second-degree murder in the death of Crystal Saunders last Saturday. (Submitted by RCMP)

While Queau's initial statutory release indicated positive progress, events showed he was deceptive to many people and ultimately was at risk of committing crimes.

"Your behaviour was inappropriate and had deteriorated to the point of undue risk, as reflected by your manipulative behaviour and failure to be open and transparent with your [case management team]," the decision said.

"Your deceptive and manipulative behaviour overshadowed any positive gains hoped from your correctional plan."

CBC News has obtained court records relating to Queau in Saskatchewan, Alberta and B.C., for charges including theft and using a forged cheque.

The two B.C. attacks for which he was sentenced in 2015 happened in February 2013 and December 2014, respectively.

The first victim said she was sexually assaulted for hours at a hotel room after meeting Queau for drinks. The other, who met Queau on Tinder, said he choked her to the point of unconsciousness after she reacted to his slapping her during sex by slapping him back.

Mounties said a national DNA databank contacted investigators after linking Queau's DNA from other convictions to Saunders's case in December 2014, but that the process to confirm a match can take years.

Although there is no evidence Queau is a suspect in any other homicides, the RCMP said after announcing the charges they will be looking for any additional connections between Queau and other unsolved crimes.