RCMP to testify at fatality inquiry of former soldier who killed his family and himself

The Mounties who arrived at the home where a former soldier shot his family and then himself three years ago are expected to recount the details of what they found at the inquiry into those deaths today.

Lionel Desmond, his wife Shanna, 31, their daughter Aaliyah, 10, and his mother Brenda, 52, died inside Shanna’s family home in Upper Big Tracadie, N.S., on Jan. 3, 2017.

The province’s chief medical examiner testified Monday that he called for the inquiry after his investigation found that there were “systemic failures” that must be improved to prevent other domestic violence deaths and to support veterans returning home from war. 

Desmond had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) soon after returning home from an eight-month tour in Afghanistan in 2007. He received treatment while in the Canadian Forces in Montreal and in New Brunswick, and sought help in Nova Scotia as a veteran. 

The CBC’s Laura Fraser is liveblogging from Guysborough, N.S., where the fatality inquiry is taking place.

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