Memorial for two children killed in southeast Edmonton grows outside apartment

A memorial continues to grow outside the southeast apartment building where two little girls were found dead in a residence under a pile of household items earlier this week.

More than 15 stuffed animals were laid out under a snow-covered tree surrounded by lit candles and bouquets of flowers on Saturday afternoon outside the Allen Manor apartment at 7920 71 St.

One bouquet of flowers had a folded up note showing the words “with love.” Residents stopped at the growing memorial to pay their respects to Mackenzie Petawaysin and Mary Lafleche Petawaysin on the quiet afternoon in the King Edward Park neighbourhood.

A resident of the apartment building brought out matches to relight the five candles. Two miniature glass angles lay at the front.

A resident of the Allen Manor apartment relights a candle at the memorial for two young girls who were found dead in the building Wednesday.

The two girls were found dead concealed in a storage unit after a second search of the apartment by police Wednesday evening.

Police first responded to an assault call at the apartment Wednesday afternoon. Tamara Petawaysin, the mother of the two girls, is the victim of the assault and was transported to hospital with serious injuries.

About three hours later, police were called to a garage break-in a few blocks away, at 73 Street and 80 Avenue, and found an unclothed man who was reportedly acting erratically.

Officers determined that the man was a suspect in the earlier assault and arrested him.

Ashton Brian Lafleche, 29, has been charged with two counts of second-degree murder and aggravated assault. Lafleche is also charged with breach of probation for contacting Petawaysin. Court records show he was recently released from jail after pleading guilty to breaching conditions of a recognizance.

Lafleche appeared briefly in court Friday morning via CCTV from the Edmonton Remand Centre and is due back in court Dec. 21.

Results of the girls’ autopsies conducted Friday morning are expected from the medical examiner Monday.

duscook@postmedia.com

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