Amherstburg police investigating early morning shooting

UPDATED STORY (as of Friday night):

The investigation into a shooting in Amherstburg has led to Windsor and the province’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) has become involved.

The Amherstburg Police Service were dispatched around 2:25 a.m. Friday to a home in the 100 block of Sandwich St. S. for a report of a male with a gunshot wound. The victim, a 31-year-old Amherstburg man, was transported to hospital with what was originally described by Amherstburg police as a life-threatening injury, though police updated his condition, stating later Friday morning that he was in stable condition in a Detroit hospital.

Sandwich St. N. was closed for several hours but re-opened around 1:30 p.m., though access to Stella Maris School was maintained.

Windsor Police were contacted and the investigation determined that a male wanted in relation to the shooting was believed to be at a residence located in the1500 block of Betts Avenue in Windsor.

Members of both police services attended the area and secured the residence. Local school boards and the public were informed that the target residence was contained, and there was no threat to public safety, Windsor police add.

At approximately 2 p.m. Friday, officers located a deceased male in a garage at the involved residence in Windsor.

Due to these circumstances, Windsor police state that officers continued to secure the scene and notified the province’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU).

SIU has invoked its mandate and as such, Windsor Police Service state they are not in a position to release any further information at this time.

The Amherstburg Police Service asks that if anyone witnessed the incident or has information relevant to the investigation, to contact police at 519-736-3622, or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 519-258-8477 (TIPS) or online at

Amherstburg Police were dispatched to the 100 block of Sandwich Street North for a report of a male with a gunshot wound Friday morning around 2:25 a.m.
Police say the victim, a 31-year-old Amherstburg man has been transported to hospital with a life-threatening injury. Police remain
on scene and the shooting is under investigation. Sandwich Street between Texas Road and St Arnaud  St. is closed and remained blocked off as of 8 a.m.
Amherstburg police ask that the public avoid area and use an alternate route until further notice.
Amherstburg police added, via Twitter at 6:52 a.m., that there are no safety concerns in relation to the investigation and that schools, including Stella Maris, are open. Access to Stella Maris is via William St.
Updates to follow
The Amherstburg Police Service asks that if anyone witnessed the incident or has information relevant to the investigation, to contact police at 519-736-3622, or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 519-258-8477 (TIPS) or online at

Construction of salt storage facility within new West End Depot approved



By Jolene Perron


A new salt storage facility will be the most recent addition to the West End Depot development, coming in nearly $13,000 under budget.

“We have been redeveloping a West End Depot, we did complete the main building, site mark and the roadway improvements to support this development this year,” director of transportation services/county engineer Tom Bateman told Essex County council. “We assumed possession of the building in mid-June and we’ve been commissioning it and operating out of there at present for some road maintenance. The next component of the project is to construct a salt storage facility.”

Completed main building photographs from the administrative report for the West End Depot Development, as seen in the September 6 County Council meeting agenda.
(Special to the RTT)

Bateman explained, the structure they are contracting out to build on the West End Depot lot, located on North Side Road just east of Howard Ave. in Amherstburg, measures 80-feet by 120-feet. It will be a fabric covered done built on a reinforced concrete wall system, which is similar to what they have at their other depots. It will allow storage for 5,000 tonnes of salt.

“We issued a design-build proposal call utilizing an electronic tendering system,” said Bateman. “We reviewed the tenders and proposals for the clients with specifications and requirements in those proposals and we’re recommending that the tendered design of the salt storage facility in the West End Depot be awarded to Barineti Construction at $362,000 plus HST.”

The most expensive estimate for the project was $461,058.03.

Bateman’s proposal to move forward with Barineti Construction’s estimate was carried.

Funding for this project is included in the 2017 Transportation Services

Department budget.

That’s one big sunflower!


By RTT Staff


Maddalena DeLuca didn’t quite expect her sunflower to get as big as it did when she planted it in June.

The local nine-year-old planted the sunflower at the side of her parents’ business, the Waterfront Ice Cream Parlour, after studying plants with her Grade 3 class with teacher Stephanie Kenny at École St.-Jean Baptiste.

“I watered it every day,” she said.

Arianna, 6, and Maddalena DeLuca, 9, stand with the huge sunflower Maddalena grew at the side of her parents’ business, the Waterfront Ice Cream Parlour.

Her mother Jen said it finally flowered Aug. 25 and they measured the sunflower to be over ten-feet in height.

The young gardener said it was the first time she tried her hand in the garden and is open to doing more in the future.

Town seeking solutions to McGregor flooding, municipal subsidy program to come soon



By RTT Staff


A McGregor resident appeared before town council regarding the late August flood and the town is stating they are coming up with answers for him and every other resident.

Tom Welsh, who lives on Middle Side Road, said his home was damaged by flooding in the Aug. 28 storm as seven inches of rain hit that area, including five inches between the hours of 7-11 p.m. He told council it’s not the first time that it happened.

“Two times in two years we’ve flooded,” said Welsh. “It’s enough. There’s more people in town that just the core.”

Welsh said he had 18 inches of water in his basement, including human feces. He noted he has even spent $3,000 on a generator trying to fix the problem.

“I don’t know what else to do. It’s got to stop. Things have to be done,” said Welsh. “I put a whole lot into (my home). It’s a nice area. Our community is awesome.”

Welsh wanted to see more investment in that area.

“Everything you see in town is for the core,” he said. “We should get something.”

The town said there is, in fact, investment happening there and work is being done to address the issues in McGregor. An $80,000 investigation was conducted and “no smoking gun” was found in the public system. Director of public works and engineering Antonietta Giofu stating “our focus shifts to the private side.” She added a report regarding a subsidy program is currently scheduled to come before council Sept. 25.

“It will definitely include McGregor and be a town-wide program as well,” she said.

Councillor Diane Pouget told Welsh “we have spent quite a bit of money” in trying to solve the problem, with Mayor Aldo DiCarlo agreeing.

“We are spending money and we will continue to spend money until we find a solution,” said DiCarlo. “This council is very committed to it. We’re going to keep working in this area to alleviate the problem.”

DiCarlo said this council is sympathetic to residents who continuously flood but said $400,000 has been budgeted this year to try and fix the problem as quickly as possible. He noted the forthcoming report will address issues as downspout disconnections and backflow valves, among other things, and that they will work with private homeowners to address issues.

The Ontario government has released this map detailing where in Amherstburg disaster relief is available stemming from the Aug. 28 rain event.

“We have not forgotten about anybody,” he said. “I think council has shown we know where the town’s boundaries are.”

One in 100 year storms are not one in 100 year storms anymore and DiCarlo added large rain events can be expected so action is needed.

“Every time it rains, if there is a mayor that doesn’t sweat, I don’t know who they are,” he said. “The hardest part is to tell people we’re working on it as I can only imagine how that has been received.”

CAO John Miceli said administration is doing its part to try and find a resolution to the problem, believing the subsidy program is a step in the right direction.

“We understand your concerns,” said Miceli. “We’re providing a program that I think will go over and above what other municipalities are offering.”

Miceli also said until a solution is found to the flooding issues, “we’re going to keep trying.”

Welsh also expressed concern with the number of power outages the area experiences, with DiCarlo stating that Essex Power has tried to work with Ontario Hydro to take over all of Amherstburg but “they have flat out denied us over and over.”

The town would be happy to facilitate a meeting between Welsh and Ontario Hydro, said DiCarlo, as he believed that would do more than the municipality trying to get involved. He added that Ontario Hydro “is all but ignoring infrastructure in rural areas.

“We’re fighting the province on this,” said DiCarlo. “If they are going to provide hydro, they have to do so reliably.”

In all, roughly 34 homes in the McGregor area have reported flooding to the town of Amherstburg.

The Ontario government notified the City of Windsor and the Towns of Amherstburg, Essex, Lakeshore, LaSalle and Tecumseh last Thursday that it has activated the Disaster Recovery Assistance for Ontarians program in flood-affected areas.

The province advised that affected individuals, small businesses and not-for-profit organizations that have experienced property damage or loss as a result of this disaster may be eligible to receive help with emergency and recovery expenses.

The program applies to a primary residence and its basic contents, or to a main small business, farm or not-for-profit organization. Damage from sewer backup is not eligible under the program except under special provisions for low-income households.

The government states it “is closely monitoring other areas experiencing flooding across the province. It may activate the program in these areas as flood impacts continue to be assessed in the coming days and weeks.”

More information and detailed program guidelines are available at or call toll-free 1-844-780-8925.


Festival of Hawks draws hundreds to Holiday Beach Conservation Area



By Jolene Perron


The Festival of Hawks is Essex Region Conservation Authority’s annual celebration of the great migration.

Described as one of the hidden gems of the Essex Region, Holiday Beach is home to one of the most spectacular animal migrations in the natural world. With the cooperation of the timing and weather, thousands of hawks soar overhead. Members of The Holiday Beach Migration Observatory are on the hawk tower from September to early November and the festival is designed to add some more family friendly elements.

Bob Hall-Brooks with The Holiday Beach Migration Observatory speaks to a crowd of birders at the Festival of Hawks Saturday about the birds they have recently caught and banded.

Events planner for the Essex Region Conservation Authority, Alex Denonville explained this is his third year being involved with the festival. He said his favorite part is seeing the families who come out and experience the event.

“One of the first families that was here this morning, they were here at 8:45, they came from South-East Michigan and we had the bander, Bob Hall-Brooks, capture a hummingbird, something they had never seen in their lives,” said Denonville. “To be able to experience that up close and personal, and for me to be a part of that and kind of facilitate that interaction, that’s the more rewarding part. When I see little kids just in awe of that, I know it’s making a difference and it’s getting them to think about it and hopefully when they grow up they will want to protect that.”

Hall-Brooks said the organization was started in 1974, when a group found Holiday Beach to be the best place to watch the fall migration. The tower itself, he said was set up in 1987, and he came along just two years later. At the time however, he was not a birder.

Cindy Cartwright member of Holiday Beach, founder and lead researcher for hummingbirds Canada looks for hawks on the hawk tower at Holiday Beach during the Festival of Hawks Saturday. Cartwright is one of the official counters of the hawks. She was on location Saturday and Sunday answering questions.

“I used to laugh at birders but my wife and I were driving around the county and we found Holiday Beach conservation authority, came in, saw the sign that said Hawk Tower,” said Hall-Brooks. “We climbed up and this was about mid-October and the fella up on the tower showed us, and shared with us, four different species of hawk flying about 20 feet over my head. I was doing a high-stress job at the time … and it just seemed to be a nice place to come and de-stress. Looking out at the marsh, looking up and counting the hawks, so that’s how I started.”

From there, he came out every Sunday to watch the hawks. He began helping with the counts two years later, and continued with that for 15 years before taking over the songbird banding. Hall-Brooks is one of only three people in all of Ontario who is able to band a hummingbird.

Elaine Guitar van Loo works with sepia ink during the Festival of Hawks, doing an ink study of the trail.

“I’ve been coming here for the past 10 years with my kids,” said event attendee Emma Poirier. “We love nature and I just like to bring them here so they can experience nature and experience the birds and learn about whatever the Essex Region Conservation Authority has to offer. It’s just a good way for them to learn all kinds of things about nature and interact and ask questions. This was the first time that they saw the birds of prey up close, so that was really exciting. They really love birds of prey and we actually saw some hummingbirds on the way here too.”

The Festival of Hawks continues next weekend, Sept. 16-17 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Holiday Beach Migration Observatory will also be on location for an additional weekend. For more information on the festival, visit People can also visit