Man found dead on Mission Flats one of three accused in robbery

Slain man facing charges

A Kamloops man found dead off Mission Flats Road was one of three people charged with robbing a downtown auto parts shop two months earlier.

Kamloops firefighters discovered the body of Adam Hibbert, 29, near the entrance to the City of Kamloops landfill on Oct. 1, while responding to a suspicious fire in the area.

RCMP officers were called in at about 4:15 p.m. and, at the time, were unable to identify the deceased, but have since confirmed his identity and that he was the victim of a homicide.

Police have not disclosed the manner in which he died.

Kamloops RCMP confirmed Hibbert was one of three people arrested and later charged in connection with the Aug. 3 robbery of Lordco Auto Parts east of downtown, which was followed by a van used in the robbery being set set ablaze in Riverside Park.

Along with Hibbert, a man and woman were also charged in connection with the robbery: Tristan Fernandez, 25, and Dakota McNabb, 26.

According to a Lordco employee who witnessed the holdup, two armed and masked people entered the building at 1395 Battle St. on Aug. 3, while a third person waited outside. The two robbers made off with a purse and a cellphone, both of which were later retrieved.

Kamloops Mounties received a description of the getaway vehicle, a blue van, which had been reported as stolen. The van was found on fire in Riverside Park downtown shortly after the robbery and three people were arrested — two suspects were found near the park’s washrooms and a third suspect was arrested near the Overlanders Bridge.

All three were released shortly thereafter, with charges against the trio not approved by Crown until Oct. 1, the day Hibbert's body was found.

Asked if police suspect Hibbert’s death to be connected to criminal activity in the city, Const. Crystal Evelyn said all motives related to his homicide are still under investigation.

Hibbert had a lengthy criminal record dating back to 2010, with offences such as break and enter, uttering threats, assault, possession of stolen property and assaulting a peace officer with a weapon.

Fernandez was re-arrested on Oct. 4 on a warrant for the robbery, as the charges were sworn only three days earlier. At the time of his death, Hibbert was also wanted on a warrant for the robbery.

Fernandez was arrested following a two-hour standoff with police at Canada's Best Value Inn and Suites (formerly the Acadian Inn) at 1390 Columbia St., east of downtown, when an officer spotted him in the area that morning. Police, who had guns drawn, surrounded the motel, evacuating from the motel and adjacent diner some residents and customers.

Fernandez has a lengthy criminal record and has been arrested numerous times in the past decade for various offences. According to court documents, Fernandez remains in custody. McNabb, who has few prior criminal convictions, is not in custody.

Both Fernandez and McNabb are scheduled to appear in court on Monday, Oct. 18, to consult with their lawyers.

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