Three co-accused charged in Gatzke murder have more court appearances

Court appearances were adjourned for three co-accused charged in connection to the 2019 murder of a North Battleford man.

Charles Michael Lewis MacLean, 23, was scheduled to have a bail hearing in North Battleford Provincial Court June 9 but the hearing wasn’t held. Isaac Melko, 22, was scheduled to appear June 11 to speak to his charges. The matter was adjourned. Jacob Joseph Ballantyne, 25, was scheduled to have a show cause hearing on June 3. The matter was adjourned.

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MacLean, Melko, Ballantyne, and a fourth accused who was a young offender at the time, were arrested in May after an eight-month long investigation by RCMP Major Crimes North. 

The investigation began last fall after the Battlefords RCMP found an injured man at a home on the 100 block of 26 Street West in Battleford on Oct. 18, 2019. The man, Ryan Gatzke, 27, was taken by EMS to the North Battleford Hospital where he was later declared deceased. 

MacLean, Melko and the young offender are all from North Battleford. Ballantyne is from Edam. 

The young offender – whose name can’t be released in accordance with the Youth Criminal Justice Act - is charged with second-degree murder, break and enter with intent to commit an indictable offence, disguise with intent, carrying a weapon for the purpose of committing an offence, possession of a firearm without a license, unauthorized possession of a firearm in a vehicle and possession of a restricted firearm while prohibited. 

Melko is charged with second-degree murder, break and enter with intent to commit an indictable offence, disguise with intent, carry a weapon for the purpose of committing an offence, possession of a firearm without a license, and unauthorized possession of a firearm in a vehicle. Melko remains in custody and is scheduled to appear in North Battleford Provincial Court June 30 to speak to the matter. 

Jacob Ballantyne is charged with second-degree murder, break and enter with intent to commit an indictable offence, disguise with intent, carrying a weapon for the purpose of committing an offence, pointing a firearm and possession of a firearm without a license. Ballantyne remains in custody and appears in North Battleford Provincial Court June 30 and July 8 to speak to the matter. 

McLean is charged with manslaughter, unauthorized possession of a firearm in a motor vehicle and break and enter with intent to commit an indictable offence. MacLean remains in custody and is scheduled to appear in North Battleford Provincial Court July 8 for a show cause hearing. 

 

 

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