Parents of Calgary stabbing suspect ‘shocked and devastated’

Matthew de Grood’s parents trying to understand how five stabbings occurred.

CALGARY—The parents of an alleged mass murderer are struggling to understand how their son, who they describe as a “great kid full of love, kindness and respect for others,” stands accused of stabbing five young people to death.

Speaking publicly for the first time on Thursday, Douglas and Susan de Grood said they, too, want to know what happened early Tuesday when their 22-year-old son, Matthew, was arrested and charged with five counts of first-degree murder in the Calgary house party stabbings.

“We are shocked and devastated and we are trying to make sense of what happened,” said a visibly emotional Douglas de Grood, a senior Calgary police officer.

“We are deeply saddened for what the families and friends of the victims are going through. Their lives have been turned upside down. We know words cannot begin to ease your pain and suffering. Please accept our deepest condolences and know you are in our hearts, our thoughts and our prayers.”

The couple spoke to the media from the steps of the office of their son’s lawyer, Allan Fay. Douglas, who Fay said has “mobility issues” and requires a cane, was at times shaking and crying as he read his prepared statement on behalf of himself and his wife, who held onto him.

Matthew de Grood, currently remanded to the Southern Alberta Forensic Psychiatry Centre pending his next court date on Tuesday, was a bright child active in sports and in the community while in high school and at the University of Calgary, where he studied psychology, said his father.



Douglas de Grood, centre, is supported by wife Susan, left, and lawyer Allan Fay after reading a statement in Calgary, Alberta on Thursday, April 17. De Grood's son Mathew is charged with killing five young people in Calgary.



Douglas said his only son — the de Groods also have a daughter — helped raise funds for charities through his passion for running, and had a bright future ahead of him as he was about to enter law school this fall.

“Like any parent can tell you, a love for your child is unconditional. And we love Matthew dearly,” he said.

The de Groods have yet to visit their son, who Fay said is lucid, but they will likely see him soon.

Matthew de Grood remains very much a mystery. The Calgary Herald, quoting an anonymous police officer and close friend of de Grood’s father, reported that he had recently become more withdrawn and had sent his parents text messages the night of the murders that led them to believe he was going to commit suicide.

The newspaper said Douglas went looking for his son, while Susan reported her concerns to police.

On Thursday, Fay said he could not “confirm or deny anything.” He did say, however, that he has not received any information that de Grood has a history of mental illness.

Ted Slone, a PhD student in psychology at the University of Calgary who was a teaching assistant for one of de Grood’s classes in 2012, said he was an above-average student, describing him as “quiet, but friendly.”

“He seemed to be normal by all accounts, socially well-adjusted, and well-liked,” said Slone.

The investigation at 11 Butler Cres., where the tragedy took place, will continue until at least Saturday. Police are still trying to establish a motive for the stabbings that took the lives of Lawrence Hong, 27, Josh Hunter, 22, and Kaiti Perras, Jordan Segura and Zackariah Rathwell, all 23, in what Police Chief Rick Hanson described as the worst mass murder in the city’s history.

Calgary police spokesman Kevin Brookwell said Thursday police are looking at de Grood’s online and texting activity.

Police have previously said he was invited to the house party in Calgary’s Brentwood neighbourhood to celebrate the end of classes, coming straight from his job at a nearby Safeway store. Brookwell said de Grood knew at least one person at the party “very well.”

Who that person is has not been made publicly available. Investigators have been interviewing and even reinterviewing the 20 or so people who were still at the party around 1:20 a.m. when the stabbings began, and are trying to determine if anyone attempted to intervene.

“We may not be able to have our answer to that question,” said Brookwell, “but I can tell you that you don’t know how you may react and it’s quite possible people didn’t even know it was going on or people froze.”

Brookwell said that even though de Grood’s father is a Calgary police officer, the investigation would be carried out “without favour or bias.”

With files from Sean Tepper


It is extremely tragic that yet again, mental health problems can lead to the worst sort of criminal offenses by those who normally are law abiding normal people.

On the other side of the coin, we have in Ontario, 54 Private Unaccountable Corporations that hire and train, Criminals to fabricate evidence and abuse children.

The Toronto Star is to be commended for its articles on criminal behaviours by the Children's Aid Society and perhaps they can take a look at the National Post article by Barbara Kay on Children’s aid societies gone rogue.

If you think "Children’s aid societies gone rogue" is a tragic story, the reality is the 54 corrupt branches of this criminal cartel destroy parents and abuse children on a daily basis.

Spare a thought for the victims of Evidence Fabricating vile examples of humanity like Phillip Hiltz-Laforge and Claudette Knuckle-Dougan who are "supervised" for these criminal offenses by Supervisors like Robert Godman who is a supervisor at the Children's Aid Society of Ottawa and who cannot not know of and condone such criminal abuse of children.

If you are a victim of the above send an email to

visit and and support the scraping in shame of Ontario's Criminal Cartel of Children's Aid Society.

Remember, lawyers don't call them the Children's Aid Society, they call them "The Gestapo" and for very good reasons.