RCMP identify man facing manslaughter charge following deadly assault

Travis Waite. File photo

A 27-year-old man is facing a manslaughter charge for allegedly dealing a fatal punch to Travis Waite.

Fort St. John RCMP announced today the charge has been laid against Cody Kenneth McDonell, 27, also of Fort St. John.

McDonell is alleged to have dealt the fatal blow to Waite following what RCMP say was a “heated discussion” outside of a local residence on May 18.

RCMP say emergency responders were called to the home May 18, where they found Waite and rushed him to the Fort St. John hospital with severe head injuries.

Officials at the hospital contacted RCMP due to the extent of the injuries, and soon after had arrested McDonell for his alleged role in the assault.

Waite had to be flown to Vancouver Hospital for treatment, prompting officers to upgrade charges against McDonell to aggravated assault.

Waite was in a coma in hospital until he died May 30. He was 29.

On June 15, an upgraded manslaughter charge was approved by the Crown.

The allegations have not been proven in court, and McDonell is presumed innocent.

Court records show McDonell has faced a number of charges in the past, including break and enter, theft under $5,000, and drunk driving.

McDonell has been released on bail. His next court appearance is set for July 22.

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