Family friend says boy, 3, seriously injured after Winnipeg stabbing has died

WINNIPEG — A three-year-old boy who was stabbed multiple times while he slept was taken off life support on Saturday afternoon and died moments later, a friend of the boy’s family said.

Hunter Haze Straight-Smith’s family gathered around his hospital bed for the child’s last moments at Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg as he was removed from the machines that were keeping him alive, said Darryl Contois, who was in the room.

Contois said Hunter breathed on his own for a short time, but the breaths eventually faded while his mother and father stayed beside him.

“They were able to hold their child’s hand as he perished, and they broke down, like any mother would do or any father would do. There’s no words to take way that pain from them,” Contois said in an interview about an hour after Hunter died.

“The family is still with him in the room. They’re taking it hard. They don’t know how to say goodbye and to leave. Their hearts are with him.”

Family had said Hunter suffered severe brain damage during the brutal attack on Wednesday.

Daniel Jensen, 33, was charged with attempted murder on Thursday.

Hunter’s mother, Clarice Smith, and Jensen had been in an off-again-on-again relationship for about six months. Police have said that at the time of the alleged attack, Jensen was under a court order not to contact the mother.

He is not Hunter’s father.

Police believe there was an argument between Smith and Jensen somewhere on Winnipeg’s Main Street. Investigators say that after the dispute, Jensen walked to the home where Hunter was asleep and allegedly stabbed him several times.

Police said that, generally, a charge may be upgraded when a victim of a crime dies.

Jensen was also charged with assault in a separate altercation that allegedly involved Smith.

The boy’s injuries and the family’s ordeal has prompted an outpouring of grief in Winnipeg.

Outside the hospital on Friday, dozens of family friends and supporters gathered for a vigil. Smith and other relatives hugged each other and wept during Indigenous prayers and drum songs.

Contois said the family is thankful for the support they’re received from the public, hospital staff and police.

“It’s hard,” he said. ”What do you say to a family that lost a child who they loved, that was taken away from them for no reason?”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Carl’s Jr. in Red Deer area closed

Co-owner of Carl’s Jr. in Gasoline Alley was caught using his bare hands to handle sauce in 2017

Cattle Show set to return to Stettler Jan. 31st and Feb. 1st

“Stettler, historically, has been a very strong cattle community. It was a real hub for the cattle industry.”

Quebec MP Gerard Deltell says non to Tory leadership

OTTAWA — Quebec MP Gerard Deltell says he’s decided not to enter… Continue reading

Studies question assumptions on industrial damage to Wood Buffalo park

New research suggests Canada’s largest national park is not drying out from… Continue reading

WATCH: Canadian kid shovelling snow video goes viral

Rory might just be Canada’s most popular toddler right now, thanks to… Continue reading

Your community calendar

Jan. 22 Downtown House Senior Center (5414 43 St.) in Red Deer… Continue reading

Hikers rescued after frigid night on Eagle Mountain in Coquitlam, B.C.

COQUITLAM, B.C. — Five hikers stranded on Eagle Mountain in Coquitlam, B.C.,… Continue reading

SpaceX launches, destroys rocket in astronaut escape test

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — SpaceX completed the last big test of its… Continue reading

Canada’s Jeff Smith wins way back to PDC pro darts tour via qualifying school

WIGAN, England — Canadian Jeff Smith has won his way back to… Continue reading

Skate Canada to wait on final decision for world championship team

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Ice dancers Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier headline the… Continue reading

Canadian golfer Lee finishes in fifth place at Singapore Open, Kuchar wins

SINGAPORE — Canadian golfer Richard T. Lee shot 1-over 71 on Sunday… Continue reading

Armed Forces being mobilized to help Eastern Newfoundland dig out

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The federal government is mobilizing the Armed Forces… Continue reading

Couple together for nearly 65 years die on the same day

ARNOLD, Mo. — A couple who had been together for nearly 65… Continue reading

Most Read