Police make second arrest after two women shot dead at Fort Erie birthday party

TORONTO — A second arrest has been made in connection with a fatal shooting of two young women at a birthday party in Fort Erie, Niagara Regional Police (NRP) confirmed Monday.

In January 2021, 20-year-old Windsor resident Juliana Pannunzio and 18-year-old Toronto resident Christine Crooks were killed by gunshot at a birthday party in a short-term rental in Fort Erie, Ont.

Police previously released video surveillance images of the party in an attempt to identify some of the unknown guests who attended the gathering.

Crooks/Pannunzio

On Monday, NRP arrested 29-year-old Heidi Bahler of Scarborough. She is facing two charges — one count of accessory after the fact to murder and one count of obstructing justice.

Bahler is currently being held in custody pending an Aug. 31 court appearance at the Robert S.K. Welch Court House in St. Catharines, Ont.

On Aug. 26, police made their first arrest in connection with the murders. Toronto resident Christopher Lucas, 22, also known as rapper ‘El Plaga,’ faces two counts of first-degree murder.

“The Niagara Regional Police Service would like to thank the Pannunzio and Crooks families for their patience and understanding during this lengthy investigation,” a news release issued by the police service read.

“Police would also like to thank members of the public for their cooperation and assistance.”

-With files from CTV Toronto’s Beth Macdonell and CP24’s Codi Wilson.

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