Charges upgraded to 2nd-degree murder in bloody west Edmonton ‘drug debt’ attack

Two men originally charged with attempted murder in connection with a west Edmonton machete attack are now facing charges of second-degree murder after the victim died in hospital.

At around 2 p.m. on Saturday April 15, police were called to a disturbance at a high-rise apartment building near 173 Street and 69 Avenue.

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A 34-year-old man was found suffering from multiple stab wounds and blunt force trauma inside a 17th-floor apartment suite. He was rushed to hospital where he died seven days later.

Family members identified the victim as Dustin Horsethief. Police said the victim was known to police. An autopsy revealed he died as a result of sharp and blunt-force injuries.

READ MORE: Autopsy confirms man died of sharp, blunt force injuries in alleged ‘drug debt’ attack in west Edmonton

Several other people were found in the apartment suite, police said. Their wrists were zip-tied and they were face down on the floor. Some suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

EPS spokesperson Scott Pattison said police believe the accused “forcibly” took those individuals to the suite. Several of them are known to police.

“We believe it’s a drug debt,” Pattison said. “Police also confiscated a machete that’s also alleged to have been used in the attack.”

Two men covered in blood were taken into custody as they came off an elevator in the building. They were later arrested and charged with attempted murder.

READ MORE: Bloody ‘drug debt’ attack in west Edmonton leads to attempted murder charges for 2 men

On Tuesday, police said the charges against Trevor Auger, 36, and Jason Hope, 38, were upgraded to second-degree murder. The pair was also charged with numerous other offences, including aggravated assault, assault with a weapon and unlawful confinement.

With files from Emily Mertz, Global News.

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