Gatineau police and the coroner's office are conducting a joint investigation to shed light into the death of a man whose body was found inside a tent at an encampment near Robert-Guertin Centre on Thursday.
Police confirmed 47-year-old Marc Jodoin was the man pronounced dead at a homeless encampment in Gatineau, Que.
Given the coroner's involvement, "we are very limited in the information we can share," explained Const. Patrick Kenney, spokesperson for Service de Police de la Ville de Gatineau (SPVG), in French on Friday.
Kenney said "it is too early" to speculate whether the death was related to "overdose or elements criminal in nature."
Const. Patrick Kenney, spokesperson for Gatineau police, says it's too early to determine the cause of Jodoin's death. (Frédéric Pepin/Radio-Canada)
Police had cordoned off an area at the encampment on Thursday evening for their investigation. By Friday morning, the area was cleared.
Workers with the Outaouais health authority, Centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux de l'Outaouais (CISSSO), were still on site Friday to provide support for those who need it, a spokesperson said through email.
Jodoin's death is "tragic" and "other homeless people who were around the deceased were greatly affected," added the CISSSO spokesperson.
The homeless encampment near Robert-Guertin Centre Friday, a day after a man's body was found inside a tent. (Julien David-Pelletier/Radio-Canada)
Carol Beauchamp was very emotional on Friday when he agreed to speak with Radio-Canada. With winter approaching, Beauchamp said he's worried about seeing the number of homeless people increase in the area.
"I'm afraid for them. They have never been homeless in their lives and they are not equipped. ... There are fewer services, but there are more needs than before," Beauchamp said. "It doesn't look good."
Jodoin's death at the encampment has shaken several others who lived near him, including Carol Beauchamp. (Frédéric Pepin/Radio-Canada)
Gatineau Mayor France Bélisle said she feels "great sadness."
"No one can and should remain indifferent to such an event," Bélisle said in an emailed statement in French. "It is essential to continue our efforts to avoid these situations."
Steve Moran, councillor for Hull and interim head of Action Gatineau, said on social media he was saddened, adding it was "a collective failure toward the obligation to ensure the safety of all, and particularly the most vulnerable."
"His departure reminds us of the precariousness of people living in homelessness, a growing issue in our territory and which deserves our full attention," he wrote in French.