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‘What have you got to lose?’: Balaquit family calls for closure after guilty verdict

The family of Eduardo Balaquit is searching for closure. Luming Cacao Balaquit

The son of a man at the centre of a manslaughter trial says the experience has been a heavy, emotional one so far.

A Winnipeg jury found Kyle Pietz, 35, guilty of manslaughter Wednesday night in the disappearance and presumed death of Eduardo Balaquit, who went missing from his workplace nearly four years ago.

Balaquit’s son Edward told 680 CJOB’s The Start the verdict gave the family some relief, although they’re still looking for closure, as his father’s body has never been found.

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“It takes a load off of our shoulders, knowing that my dad got some sense of justice,” he said.

Read more: Jury finds man guilty of manslaughter in presumed death of Eduardo Balaquit

“Throughout the trial they showed a lot of evidence. One of the main pieces of evidence we were hoping is to find out where my dad is, basically. Throughout this whole process, we basically just wanted him to come home.

“The person being guilty, being put behind bars, that’s a plus side to all of this — we don’t want anyone else getting hurt, and obviously because of what he did to my father, he deserved to be put in jail…. But my family never got to say bye and put him to rest properly.”

Click to play video: 'Questions linger for Eduardo Balaquit’s son in spite of suspect’s arrest' Questions linger for Eduardo Balaquit’s son in spite of suspect’s arrest
Questions linger for Eduardo Balaquit’s son in spite of suspect’s arrest – Mar 29, 2021

Edward Balaquit described his father as someone who was always there for friends and family, and said doing things for others was what made him happy.

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“He must have been very proud, knowing the things he did for us were making us happy. I’m hoping he knows we miss him and truly want him back.”

Pietz, who pleaded not guilty to the charge, has yet to be sentenced. His bail was revoked at the request of prosecutors and the Crown says it will be seeking a life sentence.

Prosecutors said Wednesday that Pietz — who had worked for the same business as Eduardo Balaquit until a month before he went missing — was desperately in need of cash and facing mounting, “significant” debts.

Balaquit went missing on June 4, 2018, from Westcon Equipment and Rentals, where he worked as a cleaner.

Prosecutors said Pietz saw the workplace as “an easy mark” and that Balaquit may have been targeted personally, or as a way for Pietz to get into the building.

Balaquit’s family is hoping Pietz will be willing to disclose the location of the body, especially now that he’s been convicted.

“What have you got to lose? Just tell us where my dad is. You’re already found guilty. Just do the right thing.”

Click to play video: 'Jury finds man guilty of manslaughter in presumed death of Eduardo Balaquit' Jury finds man guilty of manslaughter in presumed death of Eduardo Balaquit
Jury finds man guilty of manslaughter in presumed death of Eduardo Balaquit – May 5, 2022

 

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