Relief from family after arrest in brutal torture case
Published Wednesday, August 25, 2010 7:03PM PDT
The B.C. family of a young man left brutalized by vicious torture say they're relieved to hear that an arrest has been made in his case.
Dustin Paxton, 30, was arrested in Edmonton on Wednesday and faces charges of assault and forcible confinement against his former roommate and business partner Dustin LaFortune.
The 26-year-old victim, who was dumped at a Regina hospital in April weighing just 87 pounds, cried tears of joy when he heard of the arrest. He was badly disfigured by the torture inflicted on him, with several burns and parts of his tongue and lips cut off.
"I feel pretty good," LaFortune said in a phone call to family.
Calgary police say that Paxton was living under an assumed name when he was arrested, and have suggested there could be more victims in the torture case.
LaFortune's brother Ryan told CTV News in Nanaimo that the family sees Paxton's arrest as a turning point.
"Now that he's caught it means there's a light at the end of the tunnel for our family because we can move on from here," he said.
"This is seriously heinous stuff. It just defies explanation, why someone or how someone could do this to another human being."
Cousin Marcel LaFortune said Paxton's arrest has renewed his hopes for justice.
"I'm ecstatic. I'm not feeling so down about the whole process -- now it's started; now it's all up to the judicial system," he said.
Dustin LaFortune has regained most of his lost body weight and will soon be released from hospital, but a severe brain injury means that life will never be the same for him.
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Jim Beatty