REVELSTOKE, B.C. – The RCMP are now classifying the August 2010 drowning of an Alberta schoolteacher at Shelter Bay as a homicide.
Laura Letts Beckett, a 50-year-old elementary schoolteacher from Westlock, Alberta, was in a boat with her husband on Aug. 18, 2010.
An August 19 report in the Revelstoke Times Review, which was based on information provided by the RCMP, said that Letts Beckett was standing up in the Zodiac when she fell overboard. She was not wearing a lifejacket and it was reported she couldn’t swim.
At the time, the RCMP reported her husband attempted to rescue her but was unable to.
RCMP Southeast District spokesperson Cpl. Dan Moskaluk confirmed the RCMP suspect foul play. “The death is being classified as a homicide,” he told the Times Review in a June 14 telephone interview. “[RCMP Southeast District Major Crime Unit] has been involved and continue to be involved in the investigation. It is an ongoing investigation. They are still seeking information from anybody that might have anything.”
When asked if it was only the pair in the boat at the time of the drowning, Moskaluk said: “I can’t clarify ‘only with’ but I do know she was out on the water at the time of her death and the death was reported by her spouse.”
He said he did not know Letts Beckett’s husband’s name.
Moskaluk confirmed that investigators from the Major Crime Unit (MCU) were currently in Westlock working on the investigation.
There have been no arrests. “Police do not have anybody in custody at this time, nor have any charges been laid,” he said.
Moskaluk said he didn’t know if Letts Beckett had any friends, family or connections in the Revelstoke or Arrow Lakes area.
On Monday, June 6, members from the MCU teamed up with Revelstoke RCMP to investigate the scene of the suspected homicide at Shelter Bay. They used an RCMP boat and at least one helicopter as part of that operation.
Letts Beckett had taught at Dapp Elementary School in Dapp, Alberta for 27 years at the time of her death. Dapp is a hamlet near her home in Westlock and about 100 kilometres north of Edmonton.
Moskaluk said the purpose of a June 13 media release was to seek tips or information from the public. They are asking anyone with information to contact the Southeast District Major Crime Unit in Kelowna at 250-469-7800. Those wishing to remain anonymous can contact Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or leave info online at bccrimestoppers.com.
Please continue to monitor www.revelstoketimesreview.com for developments in this story.