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Vancouver police make year's fourth homicide arrest

Vancouver police have arrested a man in connection with the city’s fourth homicide of the year.

Johan Manuel Garcia Sime has been arrested and charged with one count of manslaughter in the death of 43-year-old Rodney James McDonald. McDonald died on April 16 from head injuries he allegedly sustained in a violent assault on April 11.

With an arrest now made, police are able to tell the public about this latest homicide as the investigation is at a point where the release of information won’t jeopardize investigative efforts.

On April 11, Rodney McDonald was found lying on the northeast corner of Carrall Street and East Hastings, suffering from serious head injuries. He was rushed to hospital, where he remained until finally succumbing to his injuries on April 16.

Prior to McDonald’s death on April 16, the investigation had been handled by the Vancouver Police Robbery Assault Unit, which aggressively pursued many investigative avenues in the search for a suspect. During the course of the investigation, efforts to find the person responsible for the murder were bolstered when VPD beat enforcement members learned of information that would lead to the identification of a suspect.

Following McDonald’s death on April 16, the VPD homicide unit took over the investigation. With the assistance of the Burnaby detachment of the RCMP, VPD investigators executed two search warrants in Burnaby in connection with the case.

On April 21, 2011, Johan Manuel Garcia Sime was arrested at the Joyce Street SkyTrain station without incident. He has since been charged with one count of manslaughter and remains in custody. Garcia does not have a criminal record.

"This is the third homicide in recent weeks in the Downtown Eastside and we know people living in the area are going to be concerned to hear about this," said Cst. Jana McGuinness. "We hope that news of arrests and charges in all three cases will provide a measure of comfort to the families of the victims, as well as residents of the Downtown Eastside community.”

There have been four homicides so far this year. The city recorded nine homicides in 2010.


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