Quebec Police Have Identified The Montreal Man Who Died Near Roxham Road Trying To See Family

Hypothermia is the suspected cause of death.

MTL Blog, Associate Editor
The provincial police insignia on a vehicle.

The provincial police insignia on a vehicle.

The Sûreté du Québec has identified the man who was found dead near Roxham Road on January 4 and determined his reason for using the unofficial border crossing. The 44-year-old victim, Fritznel Richard, was from Montreal.

According to a police investigation, Richard was trying to visit a family member who lives in the U.S. and died during his attempt.

"The victim bore no signs of violence and hypothermia appears to be the most likely cause of death," according to the police report.

An autopsy will be performed to confirm the cause of death.

Quebec provincial police began searching for Richard on December 27, after he was reported missing. Their search ended two days later, on December 29, when officers found information indicating that Richard had entered the United States.

But, just under a week later, U.S. border agents discovered his body in St-Bernard-de-Lacolle during a helicopter patrol of the area.

Every year, thousands of asylum seekers use the Roxham Road crossing to enter Canada from south of the border.

The unofficial entry point side steps the Safe Third Country Agreement between the two countries, a decree that requires agents to turn away asylum seekers from official border points. Those who use unofficial crossings and file a refugee claim can stay in the country as they await a determination.

Quebec received at least 45,250 asylum seekers last year, many of them through crossings like Roxham Road.

Sofia Misenheimer
MTL Blog, Associate Editor
Sofia Misenheimer is an Associate Editor for MTL Blog focused on gas prices in Montreal and is based in Montreal, Quebec.
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