Niagara Police arrest third person in connection to Fort Erie double murder

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Published September 2, 2021 at 8:44 am

The Niagara Regional Police Service have made a third arrest in connection to the double murder of two women in Fort Erie earlier this year.

Police said they arrested 29-year-old Trevor Barnett of Scarborough on Wednesday (Sept. 1) and he is now facing an accessory after the fact charge in connection to the murders of 20-year-old Juliana Pannunzio and 18-year-old Christine Crooks at a house party on January 19.

On that day, police were called to a Fort Erie home around 4:17 a.m. to reports that shots had been fired.

Upon arriving at the scene, the bodies of Pannunzio, who was from Windsor, and Crooks who was from Toronto, were found in the home with ‘obvious signs of trauma.’ Police said they died at the scene from gunshot wounds.

According to investigators, they were part of a group from outside the Niagara Region who were staying at a short-term rental to celebrate a birthday.

In the early days of the investigation, police struggled to gain the cooperation of witnesses and for months, the investigation moved slowly.

In June, police offered $100,000 for information that would help solve the murders.

Within the past week, two other arrests were made in connection to the case.

Last week, 22-year-old Christopher Lucas of Scarborough was arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder. Investigators say Lucas is also a rapper known as El Plaga.

On Monday (Aug. 30), police arrested Heidi Bahler, 29, of Scarborough who is also charged with accessory to murder and obstruction of justice.

At the time of his arrest on Wednesday, Barnett was in the company of a 25-year-old Markham woman and both were found to be in possession of a number of illegal drugs.

As a result, both Barnett and the woman are facing separate charges and are currently being held in custody pending a court appearance on Thursday at the Robert S.K. Welch Court House in St. Catharines.

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