Carcross hotel murder back in court

Mark Lange and Dean Boucher pleaded guilty to manslaughter in Yukon Supreme Court on November 4.

Mark Lange and Dean Boucher pleaded guilty to manslaughter in Yukon Supreme Court on November 4.

The two men were sentenced in the fall of 2006 for the murder of Carcross hotelier and Boucher’s cousin, Robert Olson, but were granted a retrial earlier this year.

On December 23, 2004, Boucher and Lange were on a drinking binge, according to the court’s agreed statement of facts.

After an interaction with a police officer outside the Caribou Hotel at about 11:30 p.m., Olson allowed the two men into his closed tavern.

The three began drinking together and at some point in the early morning hours of December 24, 2004, Boucher and Olson got into an argument.

Boucher and Lange, both in their thirties, then beat Olson to the point of unconsciousness.

The 64-year-old hotel owner was struck 15 times: twice on his back, once on his neck, five times on his scalp and seven times on his face.

During the assault, Boucher ripped the telephone off the wall and inflicted the final blows that rendered Olson unconscious.

He then rolled Olson, into the recovery position, cleared his airway by hitting him on his back and confirmed he was breathing.

Boucher and Lange then moved Olsen’s truck to the back of the hotel, placed various pieces of art from the hotel into it and then moved Olson into the back of the truck, placing a pillow under his head and a coat on top of him.

They began driving the truck towards Whitehorse, with Lange behind the wheel, and after about 20 minutes, pulled over to check on Olson, discovering that he was dead.

Boucher attempted CPR.

They then drove the vehicle to Whitehorse’s Wolf Creek subdivision and disposed of Olson’s body in a ditch.

Very shortly after that, they got the truck stuck in the snow on the side of the road and walked to the McCrae subdivision, called a cab and went downtown.

RCMP discovered Olson’s body on December 27. Boucher turned himself in on the same day and Lange turned himself in three days later.

During the trial in 2006 councillors said both men have a high risk of violently re-offending and Justice Leigh Gower found them both guilty of second-degree murder.

He sentenced Boucher to 15 years imprisonment before parole eligibility, and gave Lange 10 years before being eligible for parole.

In May of this year, the Court of Appeal granted the two men a retrial on the basis that the jury had not been given proper instructions in 2006.

Crown prosecutors have accepted the men’s pleas of manslaughter, because of their behaviour in custody since 2006, their increased acceptance of responsibility, and the fact it’s been six years since the incident, said prosecution lawyer John Phelps.

Both men originally tried to plead guilty of manslaughter in 2006.

The court ordered psychological assessments to be prepared for sentencing, which will look into Boucher and Lange’s history, their actions while in custody and will give attention to alcohol and drug addictions, which both men have blamed for their past actions.

No date has been set for sentencing at this point, but the case will be back in court on January 17, 2012.

Contact Roxanne Stasyszyn at roxannes@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Whether the dust jacket of this historical novel is the Canadian version (left) or the American (right), the readable content within is the same. (Michael Gates)
History Hunter: New novel a gripping account of the gold rush

Stampede: Gold Fever and Disaster in the Klondike is an ‘enjoyable and readable’ account of history

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Your furnace and your truck need to go

Perhaps the biggest commitment in the NDP deal with the Liberals was boosting the Yukon’s climate target

Awaken Festival organizers Meredith Pritchard, Colin Wolf, Martin Nishikawa inside the Old Firehall in Whitehorse on May 11. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Performing arts fest plans to awaken artistic talent in Whitehorse and the rural North

‘A value of ours is to make theatre as accessible as possible.’

April Mikkelsen tosses a disc during a ladies only disc golf tournament at Solstice DiscGolfPark on May 8. John Tonin/Yukon News
Yukon sees its first-ever women’s disc golf tournament

The Professional Disc Golf Assocation had a global women’s event last weekend. In the Yukon, a women’s only tournament was held for the first time ever.

Dave Blottner, executive director at the Whitehorse Food Bank, said the food bank upped its services because of the pandemic. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Food Bank sees Yukoners’ generosity firsthand

“Businesses didn’t know if they could stay open but they were calling us to make sure we were able to stay open.”

A prescribed burn is seen from the lookout at Range Road and Whistle Bend Way in Whitehorse May 12. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Editorial: Are you ready for a forest fire?

Citizens for a Firesmart Whitehorse have listed some steps for Yukoners to boost safety and awareness

Caribou pass through the Dempster Highway area in their annual migration. A recent decision by the privacy commissioner has recommended the release of some caribou collar re-location data. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News)
Privacy commissioner recommends release of caribou location data

Department of Environment says consultation with its partners needed before it will consider release

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Family pleased youth will be able to get Pfizer vaccine

Angela Drainville, mother of two, is anxious for a rollout plan to come forward

Safe at home office in Whitehorse on May 10, 2021. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Federal government provides $1.6 million for Yukon anti-homelessness work

Projects including five mobile homes for small communities received funding.

Drilling at Northern Tiger’s 3Ace gold project in 2011. Randi Newton argues that mining in the territory can be reshaped. (Yukon government/file)
Editorial: There’s momentum for mining reform

CPAWS’ Randi Newton argues that the territory’s mining legislations need a substantial overhaul

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)
KDFN business park subdivision approved

Will mean more commercial industrial land available in Whitehorse

Main Street in Whitehorse on May 4. Whitehorse city council has passed the first two readings of a bylaw to allow pop-up patios in city parking spaces. Third reading will come forward later in May. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Whitehorse council pursuing restaurant patio possibilities

Council passes first two readings for new patio bylaw

Most Read