Sydney mother seeks answers after son’s death
More than five months after her son’s death, a Cape Breton mother continues to seek answers about what happened.
It was on the morning of December 8th, 2018, when Sandi Steele received a knock on her door that she’ll never forget.
A Cape Breton Police Officer delivered the news that her 22-year-old son Blair Harris was dead.
“I miss ‘I love you Mom’. I miss so many things, I would give anything to hear his voice again,” says Steele.
More than five months later, Steele is left with pain and anger, and lots of unanswered questions.
She says she’s received very little information from Cape Breton Police, only that her son died of a single gunshot wound, that police believe to be accidental. But Steele believes that’s not the whole story.
“Blair was right-handed, and he was shot in the middle of the left side of the neck,” explains Steele. “It was a .22 calibre rifle, and he had a bummed left-shoulder. He dislocated it numerous times and already had surgery on it once, and was waiting for a bone graft in Halifax for a second surgery.”
Harris’ body was found in his Sydney Mines apartment. Police say there were three others in the apartment at the time of the shooting, but Steele says they too have said very little about that night.
Cape Breton Regional Police say the file has been turned over to the medical examiner’s office, who says they cannot offer any details about the case, besides saying they will speak directly to the family after the report is finished.
Steele says she’s been in contact with the medical examiners officer, and so far they are unable to tell her if the gunshot wound was self-inflicted, and it could take months before she receives a written report.
The entire process has taken its toll on the family.
“It’s just so hard,” says Ann Steele, Blair’s maternal grandmother. “With Blair gone it’s a big part of us gone with him.”
“I would give anything to hear his voice again,” says Sandi Steele. “I know I’m not going to other than videos, but if I have some answers, I can at least work my way around living with what happened.
Steele said she would be willing to accept the cause of her son’s death if the police gave her more information.
For now the family is planning a protest outside of the Sydney Mines police station Monday, May 27 at 2 p.m., in hopes of finding the answers that they are looking for.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Kyle Moore.