Vancouver man arrested in city’s first homicide of 2020

Jesus Cristobal-Esteban died following an altercation in Oppenheimer Park

Vancouver police announced Wednesday an arrest in the murder of Jesus Cristobal-Esteban.

The 62-year-old died following an altercation in Oppenheimer Park on New Year’s Day. Vancouver police media relations office Const. Tania Visintin said Cristobal-Esteban sustained a serious head injury and was taken to hospital where he died the next day.

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Vancouver’s Glen Domenic Martin, 50, was arrested Thursday and stands charged with manslaughter.

“Homicide investigators have worked meticulously on this file to gather evidence and recommend charges,” Visintin said. “We hope this arrest brings some closure to the victim’s family and the community.”

Martin remains in police custody.

Friends previously told the Courier that Cristobal-Esteban, who lived above the Evelyne Saller Centre on Alexander Street, was known to many in the Downtown Eastside for different reasons.

That included his work in the community kitchen at Oppenheimer, his marimba playing, helping organize health fairs and Christmas parties for migrant workers, his membership with St. James’ Anglican Church on Cordova Street and supporting the Latino community through activism.

In the days after his death, more than 100 people turned up the Watari Counselling and Support Services Society on East Hastings to pay tribute to Cristobal-Esteban, who volunteered at the agency.

Cristobal-Esteban also worked for Sole Food Street Farms, which operates four farms on urban land in Vancouver, for nearly eight years.

“He was an important and integral part of our team and the loss is unbelievable. I’m not talking about from a physical labour perspective, I’m talking about the place he filled on our crew as a human and how it was oversized,” said Michael Ableman, founder and director of Sole Food.

—     With files from Mike Howell

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