RCMP investigation results in verdict of first degree murder in death of 5-year-old Quinn Butt

St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador – Today, in Supreme Court, Trent Butt of Carbonear was convicted of first degree murder in the death of his daughter, five-year-old Quinn Butt. He previously plead guilty to the additional charge of arson. His sentencing will take place on April 23, 2019.

In the early morning hours of April 24, 2016, the RCMP responded to a report of a residential fire at the home of Trent Butt in Carbonear. Pursuant to an extensive investigation which involved the RCMP Major Crime Unit, Harbour Grace Detachment investigators and RCMP Forensic Identification Section, Mr. Butt was arrested and charged with first degree murder and arson.

“The RCMP extends its deepest condolences to Quinn’s mother, Andrea Gosse, and her extended family,” said Superintendent Turton. “We presented a strong and thorough case that supported the charge of first degree murder. We are pleased that the jury concluded, based on the evidence, that this charge was appropriate, even though the verdict provides little solace for those who loved Quinn and continue to grieve.”

Corporal Peter Gosse of the Major Crime Unit in St. John’s led the investigation and was among those who testified at the trial.

“I have to commend all the local first responders who assisted right from the beginning of the investigation through to the end of the court process,” said Corporal Gosse. “The local volunteer firefighters who were among the first on scene, the paramedics, the health professionals at Carbonear General Hospital – you all were outstanding and provided professional and compassionate care during a very difficult and emotional time. I have to also acknowledge our police officers out of Harbour Grace Detachment, Major Crime and Forensic Identification. Your professionalism and expertise in carrying out very important and challenging work helped us significantly in completing a thorough investigation. I also thank the jury for their service, as well as the members of the media who covered the trial.”

“A case like this, with the sudden and tragic loss of a young child, can take its toll on all involved,” added Superintendent Turton. “We encourage anyone who feels they have been impacted to seek help if needed.”

The work of police can often require dealing with circumstances that can cause trauma and have lasting impacts for not only police officers but employees at all levels. The RCMP has a multitude of health and wellness services available to support the mental health of members, including a Peer to Peer program, critical incident stress management team, mental health training, disability management and accommodations program, and supplemental and occupational health benefits. Employees also have access to Employee Assistance Services, which is a free, confidential service available to all RCMP employees and their family members, accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.


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