RCMP investigate discovery of a body in Yarmouth County residence

Tina Comeau
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It's not known how the man died, or how long he was in the residence

By Tina Comeau



(NOTE: This is a Dec. 5 updated version of the original story)

On the door hung a Christmas wreath. In the window a plastic Santa Claus face. A couple of months ago there had been Halloween decorations. Yet despite the appearance of a house that looked lived in, neighbours couldn’t help but feel that something was off.

Their concerns were confirmed on Tuesday, Dec. 3, when RCMP officers entered the home at 55 Grove Road and found the deceased body of 76-year-old Stanley Ernest Adams.

How he died and how long ago, however, was not immediately clear – not to neighbours, and not to investigators.

What was obvious was that the man’s death was not a recent event.

“We can say that the deceased had been there for quite some time, and we are not talking about days,” RCMP Sgt. Al LeBlanc told the Vanguard.

An autopsy scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 5, was expected to aid in the investigation. Court documents filed at the Yarmouth Justice Centre, however, give some insight into the fact that the home owners’ death likely occurred many months ago, as they list the dates of offences against a 43-year-old Yarmouth man as having taken place between Jan. 22 and Dec. 3.

The man who police have arrested is Timothy Stanley Adams, who neighbours have identified as the nephew of the deceased and whom they say has been living in the residence. He has been charged with one count of neglecting to perform duties with reference to burial and one count of offering indignities to human remains.

Following a very brief appearance in provincial court in Yarmouth on Wednesday, Dec. 4, Adams has been sent for assessment at the East Coast Forensic Hospital in Dartmouth. His next court appearance is scheduled for Dec. 20.

The remains of Stanley Adams were removed from the Grove Road residence on Wednesday evening, Dec. 4. Neighbours told this newspaper they hadn’t seen the elderly man for some time – people living across the road said it was last winter when he had returned home from the hospital after having suffered a heart attack. He looked frail, they said, when he came back home.

Neighbours said things didn’t add up, including when they questioned the whereabouts of the elderly man. People were told he was in a senior’s residence or living in Halifax. Eventually they stopped believing that, even though when people would knock on the door of the residence, no one would answer. At the very least, they knew the nephew was living in the home because they’d see him come and go at times, although even he wasn’t spotted frequently.

People living nearby thought it was strange when tarps were put up, covering a part of the house, and a fence-like barricade appeared.

One neighbour who lives a few houses away from 55 Grove Road said the elderly man was a hoarder of cats. As far back as the spring, she said, cats started showing up at her home.

And the decorations on the home, they said, was weird too.

"That stuff just kept appearing," said a neighbour, saying they never saw anyone putting up the decorations.

Sgt. LeBlanc said calls made to the RCMP brought them to the home. A neighbour said the police kept coming for several days.

“They kept banging and banging on the door and there was cop cars there continuously,” she said.

After a few days the police didn’t wait for an answer at the door anymore as they made their way into the home.

“Pursuant to a call of concern, background checks and neighbourhood inquiries, we entered the home to check on Mr. Adams,” Sgt. LeBlanc said. It was then that the grim discovery was made.

The RCMP went to neighbours’ homes, questioning them some more as to when they had last seen the homeowner. In a media release, the RCMP also asked people to contact them if they had seen anything suspicious at the residence, or had contact with the deceased.

The RCMP spent days at the residence processing the scene. It is expected to take weeks to get back the autopsy results, along with other lab reports.

The Yarmouth town and rural detachments, the Southwest Nova Major Crime Unit, Forensics Identification and the Yarmouth and Clare Street Crime Enforcement Unit have all been involved in the investigation and have been assisted by the Medical Examiner's Office.



Organizations: RCMP

Geographic location: Yarmouth County, Grove Road

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