Man charged in deaths of boys by python


CAMPBELLTON, N.B. – Police in New Brunswick have charged a man with criminal negligence causing death after two young brothers were asphyxiated by a python.

The RCMP said in a release today that the charge against 38-year-old Jean Claude Savoie was laid in provincial court Monday in Campbellton, N.B.

Four-year-old Noah Barthe and his six-year-old brother Connor were found dead on Aug. 5, 2013, after an African rock python escaped its enclosure inside Savoie’s apartment in Campbellton, where they were staying for a sleepover.

The RCMP said at the time that the 45-kilogram snake escaped a glass tank through a vent and slithered through a ventilation pipe, but its weight caused the pipe to collapse and it fell into the living room where the boys were sleeping.

Police say autopsies determined the boys died from asphyxiation.

The RCMP say they arrested Savoie on Feb. 5 in Quebec and he is due in Campbellton provincial court on April 27 to face the charge.