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Crown looks to extend seizure of evidence from Kelowna crane collapse

July 18, 2022  By CastaNet

The criminal investigation into the tragic collapse of a crane in Kelowna’s downtown core continues, with the Crown seeking to extend its seizure of some pieces of evidence Thursday.

Four young construction workers – Cailen Vilness, Jared Zook, and Patrick and Eric Stemmer – were killed on July 12, 2021 when they were taking down a large tower crane at the Mission Group’s Bernard Block project.

In the collapse, the crane boom struck another adjacent building, killing Brad Zawislak who was inside.

Following the horrific incident, WorkSafeBC, the BC Coroners Service and the RCMP all began independent, parallel investigations into what led to the fatal collapse.


During a court appearance last week, the Crown applied for the further detention of items seized by police from Stemmer Construction Ltd. at the beginning of the investigation. Stemmer Construction had been contracted by Mission Group to operate the crane.

Under Section 490(3) of the Canadian Criminal Code, the Crown must get permission from a judge to hold onto seized items longer than one year, if the judge finds the investigation is of a “complex nature.”

Justice Briana Hardwick sealed Thursday’s proceedings, so all submissions made during the hearing are covered under a sweeping publication ban.

The RCMP investigation into the collapse is still ongoing, and no criminal charges have been laid in relation to the fatal incident.


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