Thursday , May 19 2022

Civilian, a veteran police officer dead in the Manitoulin Island shooting


A 28-year veteran of the Ontario Provincial Police, Const. Marc Hovingh, a civilian has died in a shooting on Manitoulin Island, police confirmed Thursday.

The incident happened Thursday afternoon, when officers were called to a property in a sparsely populated corner of Manitoulin Island, northeast of the small town of Gore Bay.

“There are two watches where you can see the town of Gore Bay over cliffs. It’s a place where tourists go out to get a really good bird’s eye view of the island, ”said Bill Concannon, a Gore Bay resident who runs a Facebook group for island residents.

“At this time of year, there would be very little traffic going up and down that road at all,” he said.

He found police vehicles overflowing into the area, first one or two, then as many as 10, according to reports from various neighbors, much lazier.

“(Major crime) is the furthest thing from our minds,” Concannon said of the community.

Hovingh, 53, leaves a wife and four children left, according to the Ontario Provincial Police Association.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the Hovingh Provincial Constable’s family and colleagues at this difficult time,” OPPA President Rob Jamieson said in a statement on Thursday.

According to the OPP, officers with the Little Current Detachment went to a property near Gore Bay in response to a complaint from an “unwelcome man.”

That’s where Hovingh was shot and killed, and the man was also shot on the property. The civilian was taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Police have not released his name, citing the need to first contact the next of kin.

The Special Investigations Unit, an independent body dealing with deaths and other serious police-related incidents, is investigating.

Thursday night, tributes to Hovingh began pouring in on a community Facebook page. Neighbors who did not know him directly said they knew him well in the community.

OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique tweeted Thursday that Marc Hovingh had served with the OPP for 28 years.

Manitoulin Island, located at the northern end of Lake Huron near Sudbury, is home to about 14,000 people. A new OPP liquidation opened in Little Current, on the east side of the island, in August.

The killing of police officers on duty is rare, but they happen every year in Canada. According to the Police and Peace Officers Memorial, a not-for-profit group that conducts memorial services to police who died on duty, 3 to 5 officers die each year in Canada.

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In July, Young RCMP officer Allan Young died in Nelson, BC, after attempting to intervene in a alternate. Const. Heidi Stevenson was killed on duty during a Nova Scotia mass shooting incident on April 19.

– with files by Alex McKeen, Wendy Gillis, Manuela Vega

Alex McKeen

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