Three years after the senseless shooting death of St. FX running back Ashton Dickson outside an Ottawa night club, police have released footage of the incident to the public and are offering a $75,000 reward to anyone who can identify a person of interest.
Dickson was just 25-years old when an apparent verbal altercation in the Mingle Room night club on Rideau Street turned physical, resulting in Dickson being assaulted by a group of unidentified men and shot dead in the street. Police have identified as many as nine persons of interest that they not yet spoken to in the video and are encouraging anyone who may recognize them or was at the Mingle Room on June 26th, 2017 to come forward.
— Ottawa Police (@OttawaPolice) June 26, 2020
Donna Dickson, Ashton’s mother, pleaded in the release for information that might bring closure to his family.
“We the family of Ashton Dickson, are appealing for the public’s assistance in identifying any of these individuals. It has been three years since Ashton was taken from us. While everyone else continue with their lives, our family continues to mourn his death. There is still a killer walking the streets that needs to be brought to justice. He was only 25 years old and he left behind a daughter that he will never get to meet. If you were at Mingle Room on June 26, 2017 or you have any information, please come forward and contact the Ottawa Police. We need your help.”
Dickson was told by his girlfriend that she was pregnant just three days before his death. His daughter was born after the tragedy.
In conjunction with the video’s release, Donna Dickson has officially launched the Ashton Dickson Youth Empowerment foundation, an organization designed to help racialized youth in Ottawa in her son’s memory.
Channeling incredible grief into POSITIVITY. Make sure to check out the newly launched Ashton Dickson Youth Empowerment Website. https://t.co/saGE0mPLJW
There is a lot of great information for all. Remembering Ashton while empowering today's youth. #ADYE #8
— Gary Waterman (@GaryWatermanX) June 26, 2020
Dickson was a rising football star in the Ottawa community, excelling for the Canterbury Mustangs, Cumberland Panthers, St. Patrick’s High School and Ottawa Sooners. He would later go on to star for the St. Francis Xavier X-Men, becoming the school’s all-time leading rusher with 3,178 yards and earning AUS conference MVP honours in 2015.
The football community in Ottawa and Atlantic Canada has long called for more attention to Dickson’s case, with a Change.org petition demanding the release of the video topping over 217,000 signatures before today’s announcement.
According to Staff Sergeant Bruce Pirt:
“This is an active investigation and our detectives have pursued multiple leads over the last three years. We know that there are several people who were there and witnessed this murder but have not spoken to police. They have important information that could help solve this case. We are asking those in the video to contact us. We need your help and we need you to come forward with the information you have.”
Anyone with information about the identity of persons who can be seen in the video or witnesses can contact the Homicide Unit at 613-236-1222, ext. 5493.
Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-222-8477.