Two violent deaths in Puvirnituq made for a horror-filled weekend.
Police were called to a local residence the evening of Friday, June 13. When they arrived, they found Lydia Emaruituk, 66, lying on the floor, and her son Lazarussi Qaqatuk, who was very intoxicated.
An autopsy will be performed to find out the exact cause of death. In the mean time, Qaqatuk is detained at the Amos detention facility.
Emaruituk had suffered from numerous ailments, and relied on oxygen to breathe.
Surete de Quebec investigators arrived from Rouyn-Noranda on Saturday at 8:30 A.M. and finished up their investigation at six o’clock that night. A half hour later, police were called to inform them of a body laying in the street.
Police officers found Elisapi Assapa, 31, with a shotgun wound to her head. She also received a shotgun blast to the buttocks. Her body was sent for autopsy. Levi Novalinga is charged with first-degree murder in the case.
The police have no motive for the killing.
Larry Hubert of the Kativik regional police said that the last murder in POV was around October or November. He hopes to make people more aware of proper weapon storage.
Puvirnituq mayor Paulusi Novalinga says that there’s not much he or anyone else can do about weapons in the community. “I always say that if someone wants a firearm, anyone can have it,” Novalinga said.
The band council immediately imposed a one-week ban on alcohol. The council will decide later whether they should extend the ban.
“As a northern community, firearms are a tool, a necessity, a subsistence tool. Each household in the north has a firearm. We’re hunters and we depend on hunting for a living, and that’s the way it’s going to continue,” Novalinga added.
“It’s unfortunate it happened to us, that incident could have been prevented but not much can be done about it (now). We’re hurt, the whole community is hurt about this, and we have to go on.”