Charges Laid in Connection to Opioid Overdose Death in St. Catharines

On July 22, 2022, at approximately 7:00pm, 1 District (St. Catharines/Thorold) uniform officers were called to a business in the area of Welland Ave and Geneva Street in the City of St. Catharines regarding a male who was unresponsive and appeared to be experiencing an overdose outside.

The 26-year-old male never regained consciousness and was pronounced deceased in hospital on July 30, 2022.

Members of the Niagara Regional Police Opioid Enforcement and Education Unit, the St.Catharines Detective Office and the Homicide Unit began an investigation into the circumstances of the male’s death and determined that the death was directly attributed to the consumption of Fentanyl.

On October 2, 2022, 34-year-old Krzysztof Sojka of Hamilton was arrested and charged with:

Trafficking a Schedule I substance to wit, Fentanyl contrary to section 5(1) of the CDSA Manslaughter contrary to section 236(b) of the Criminal Code

Sojka is currently being held in custody pending a bail hearing on Monday October 3, 2022, at the Robert S.K. Welch Courthouse in the City of St. Catharines.

The OEEU is funded by the Ontario Government’s Community and Safety Policing Grant. The OEEU is a Niagara Regional Police Service initiative focused on education regarding the risk associated with illicit opioid use, while incorporating enforcement to address opioid-related issues within our community.

Anyone who may have information in relation to this incident is encouraged to contact the lead detective at 905-688-4111, option #3, badge #1009476.

Members of the public who wish to provide information anonymously are encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers of Niagara online or by calling 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).  Crime Stoppers offers cash rewards to persons who contact the program with information that leads to an arrest.