Inuit Student's Murder Sparks Renewed Calls for National Violence Inquiry
As two were charged in the murder of Loretta Saunders, the 26-year-old Inuit university student who was researching the issue of missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada, the call for a national inquiry into the problem rang out anew as condolences poured in from across the country.
Victoria Henneberry, 28, and Blake Leggette, 25, were charged with murder on Thursday February 27 and were scheduled to appear in court in Halifax on February 28. Saunders, who was pregnant, went missing on February 13. Her body was found hundreds of miles away, in a highway median in New Brunswick, on February 26. Henneberry and Leggette, who were subletting Saunders’s apartment, had already been arrested in possession of her car in Ontario, 2,000 miles away. She had gone to collect back rent from them, according to accounts. Police believe she died the day she disappeared and was killed in the apartment.
Speaking on the CBC show Maritime Noon, Cheryl Maloney, president of the Nova Scotia Native Women’s Association, reiterated a longstanding call for a national inquiry to be conducted into why aboriginal women are five times more likely to be attacked than non-Native women. Other indigenous groups soon followed suit.
“I think what society believes is a typical woman at risk is somebody working in the sex-trade industry, on drugs, mental illness, those types of things,” said Maloney, who was also serving as a spokesperson for Saunders’s family, according to CBC News. “But the fact is our women are disappearing, and they’re not typically in the sex trade.”
Please use the log in option at the bottom of this page