Parent pens letter to mayor urging action as stepson recovers from stabbing
Published Monday, August 27, 2018 6:10PM CST
A Winnipeg man is urging the city's mayor to speak out about violent crime after a spate of incidents, including the life-altering stabbing of his stepson.
Mike Enns’ stepson was stabbed in a random attack in Central Park on Aug. 18. In a letter to Brian Bowman, Enns said “of the near 20 stab and slash wounds inflicted on him, the majority were to his face, head, and throat,” and that he is lucky to be alive.
“As the police statement said, our son has traumatic life altering injuries, and unfortunately it’s going to be a long road,” Enns told CTV News Monday, adding that his son his son came home from hospital with a very positive outlook and a great support network.
“From here, it’s about moving on,” he said.
Enns said it wasn’t until reading of other attacks in the city -- including the daytime serious sexual assault of a woman who was walking along a river path, a rash of unrelated stabbings, and media reports quoting police as saying people shouldn’t walk in the area around Central Park alone in the dark -- that he decided to pen his letter to the mayor.
“That officially, to me, says that the police have thrown their hands up, and there is a part of Winnipeg that is a no-go zone, and I find that unacceptable,” said Enns.
“This is a very, very dark week for violent crime in Winnipeg, and I was very concerned the mayor hadn’t addressed this.”
In his letter, Enns criticized the mayor for not speaking out about the recent incidents while being otherwise active on social media.
He also told CTV News he has no issue with how the Winnipeg Police Service operates.
A spokesperson for Mayor Brian Bowman told CTV News Bowman called Enns to speak about his concerns directly, and “listened to a father who came dangerously close to losing a son, a horrible incident that nobody should have to experience.”
The statement went on to say that Bowman spoke about the approach the city and police are taking to increase public safety, including “increasing the police budget every year to the point of it being the largest police budget in the history of the city, bolstering foot patrol programs in the downtown, increasing lighting in areas known to be high risk for crime, and working on ways to increase video surveillance that bolster video surveillance activity currently undertaken by police.”
Full text of Mike Enns' letter:
With files from CTV's Maralee Caruso