Man charged over gay murders
A Nova Scotia man has been charged with the murder of two gay men.
Glen Douglas Race was arrested in Texas on Tuesday by the U.S. Border Patrol. Race stands accused of murder in the first degree of Trevor Brewster and in the second degree of Michael Knott.
He is also wanted in New York State for the murder of caretaker Darcy Manor.
Attempts to extradite Race to New York state are underway. It is unclear as to how this will affect attempts to return him to Canada.
The police believe that Race travelled through New Brunswick and Quebec to the U.S. in Brewster’s car. They are still looking for the two-door black 2004 Honda Civic.
Knott’s body was found on 5th May by an off-road driver. His car was then found in woods near Halifax Stanfield International Airport.
Brewster’s body was found a week ago by a man collecting recyclables in a Dartmouth park frequented by gay men looking for sex.
In light of the murders, the Halifax police issued a rare public warning to the gay community last week.
In a statement, Deputy Chief Chris McNeil of the Halifax Regional Police said:
“We do not know if [Brewster and Knott’s] sexual orientation or the cruising areas played a factor in their deaths.”
“These circumstances though cannot be ruled out as contributing factors; therefore, we are issuing a public advisory about potential safety concerns in cruising areas in the Halifax Regional Municipality.”
“We are taking this unusual step to ensure individuals are not putting themselves at risk in these areas.”
It is also unclear as to whether Race knew Brewster and Knott.
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Kevin Kindred, chairman of the Nova Scotia Rainbow Action Project told GlobeandMail.com: “It certainly is an unusual step.”
“I think that this community takes safety seriously and this warning has certainly caused people to be more conscious of their safety.”
Although the police are investigating other missing persons, they stress there is no connection of the two recent murders with earlier cases. However, Brien said “We will look at every possibility.”
Halifax has a large and vibrant gay community, demonstrated by its increasingly popular annual pride parade.
Don Sullivan, one of the founders to the local chapter of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays told GlobeandMail.com that Halifax is a magnet for gay men across the mostly rural province.
“It’s substantial for a city the size of Halifax. It’s big enough that not everybody who’s gay felt obliged to go to Toronto or Montreal or Vancouver.”