Barb Friske was washing dishes in the kitchen of her Dacre, Ont., home Friday afternoon when a loud noise told her something had gone wrong.
“I said to my husband, ‘Oh my gosh, it sounds like somebody coming in the yard with a flat tire,” Friske said.
“So we started out of the house to see if whoever was in the vehicle needed help. [By the] time we walked out the back door, the police helicopter was over the house.”
For nearly 24 hours, police had been scouring both the roads and the skies for Ugo Fredette, a Quebec man wanted after a six-year-old boy disappeared from Saint-Eustache, Que., just west of Montreal.
They had issued an Amber Alert late on the afternoon of Thursday, Sept. 14, when Véronique Barbe was found dead at a home in the city.
Fredette’s white pickup truck was found the next morning near Lachute, Que., which is where it’s believed Fredette commandeered a dark grey Honda SUV that belonged to 71-year-old Yvon Lacasse.
Barbe’s death is being considered a homicide, police have said. As of 3:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon, Lacasse was still missing.
‘Get in the house’
Ontario Provincial Police said they were able to disable the Honda at around 5 p.m. on Friday near Dacre — nearly 300 kilometres west of Saint-Eustache — using a spike belt. They then arrested Fredette following a short foot chase.
Standing next to the still-visible tire marks Sunday afternoon, Friske told CBC News how police officers swiftly descended on the family’s home along Highway 132, searching for the wanted man.
“They had guns, and they were yelling at us to get in, get in, get in the house,” Friske said.
Friske and her husband John retreated into their home as officers approached the vehicle, which had barrelled through a flower bush and come to rest against a stone fence.
“There was nobody, I guess, in the vehicle at the time. So they came back up this way, and they were looking [for the man and the boy],” she said.
“And I said to the officer — I says, ‘The garage is open. Maybe you’d like to look in there.'”
The couple watched from their bedroom window as officers began to search…