Monday, October 27, 2014

Unsolved Murder of James Schleppe

The James Schleppe I knew was a very gentle person.  I met him (actually, I trained him) in the late 1960s when he was hired to work at the Alberta Liquor Control Board (ALCB) store in the North Hill Shopping Centre in Calgary.

As we worked cleaning and stocking the shelves, he would tell us stories of his home town of Beiseker.  We heard about the Berreths, the Hagels and the Schmaltzes.  We heard about Beiseker School.  We heard about St. Mary's Church and everything else in his home town.  He was a very devout Christian and wanted to help as many folks as he could, even back then.

His love of Beiseker came forward again later when he became president of the Beiseker Historical Society, which was instrumental in producing Beiseker's history book, Beiseker's Golden Heritage, published in 1977.   When I'd moved to Beiseker in the early 1970s, we would occasionally bump into him around town, as he often came out to visit his family. 

On September 28, 1991, James' body was found along the Trans-Canada Highway in west Calgary, near 101 Street NW.  At first it was thought that he was the victim of a hit-and-run accident, but later we heard he had been beaten.  The trail went cold and no one was ever charged with his death.  James' death was deemed an unsolved murder.

Now the Calgary Police Service are revisiting this and other "cold case" murders since the 1970s.  I am hoping that new evidence examination techniques and the publication of his photo in the newspaper might finally lead to closure in his murder. 

If you have any information about James' death, please contact the Calgary Police Service at 403-266-1234, or Calgary Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

No comments:

Post a Comment