Kenyan student killed in Canada mass shooting that left 4 dead
A Kenyan student is among the four people who were early Sunday morning shot dead in Canada.
Melelek Leseri Lesikel, 29, died after being shot on Langside Street, police said Monday in a news release.
Lesikel was studying Biology at the University of Manitoba, and according to police reports, he was killed in cold blood in the shooting with three others, namely Crystal Shannon Beardy (34), Stephanie Amanda Beardy (33), and Dylan Maxwell Lavallee (41).
Crystal and Stephanie Beardy have since been identified as sisters.
Lesikel’s family lives in the United States and Kenya and have since been notified by the relevant authorities.
The Kenyan student, Lesikel, was reported missing months before he was found dead. His former roommate, who used to live with him in 2017 before he moved out, confirmed to the Free Press Canada that they last spoke 10 months ago.
“He was a really soft, nice person. He was very friendly and had a smile always on his face,” said Nosherwan Khilji, Lesikel’s friend and former roommate.
“He was always very polite.” Khilji, who now lives in B.C., told Free Press that the last time they spoke, Lesikel told him he had completed a bachelor of sciences degree and had applied to become a permanent resident of Canada.
He said he previously worked at a local call centre, and was living on his own in an apartment in the Earl Grey neighbourhood.
Pamela Obonde, president of the Kenya Association of Manitoba, said Lesikel has one brother in the United States and another family in Kenya.
She told local media that she did not know him personally, but members of the Kenyan community are in contact with his family and are hoping to speak on their behalf in the coming days.
“As a community we are trying to put our heads together to see how we are going to respond to this,” Obonde said.
Former association president Sam Aguko spoke with Lesikel’s mother sometime around 2021 or 2022, when he was still leading the community group.
At the time, Lesikel was missing in Winnipeg, and his family had reached out for help in finding him, Aguko said.
“We tried our best to find him, but we never found him. Then his mom came to Winnipeg and he reappeared,” he said. “They were able to connect and she went home with him back to Kenya.”
No arrests have been made at this point, and no suspects have been identified, Winnipeg police said at Monday’s news conference.