Grieving friends of a well-liked young Winnipeg man who died following an alleged assault outside a Transcona house have turned en masse to social media to mourn his death.
"You don't know what was taken from us, his family and the world," a friend of Christian O'Neail's said in a lengthy note posted to Twitter Sunday. "The potential and the person he is, will never be duplicated."
O'Neail, 18, died in hospital Saturday, hours after being struck outside a home on Nevens Bay in east Transcona just before 1 a.m.
According to police, a "large group of kids" were gathered at the home and a verbal dispute broke out between the suspect and the victim.
"Everything was fine" prior to the dispute, Const. Eric Hofley said. The dispute spilled onto the street and a punch was thrown.
Police were summoned to the home by neighbours who reported a disturbance, Hofley said. There, officers learned O'Neail was already on his way to hospital in critical condition.
Hofley couldn't say if alcohol was a factor leading to the fatal scrap.
Neither O'Neail nor his suspected killer lived at the Nevens Bay home.
A 17-year-old boy faces a manslaughter charge and is being held at the Manitoba Youth Centre, said police. Neither O'Neail nor the suspect, who can't be identified under youth justice laws, had any past dealings with police, said Hofley.
Many people living on Nevens Bay declined to comment on the incident to the Free Press when visited Sunday.
Police ask anyone who was at the party and witnessed the altercation but has yet to speak with police to call homicide detectives at 204-986-6508.