Local briefs – March 3

The lawyer for a man charged in a strangulation murder wants to get the ball rolling for a preliminary hearing.

Lawyer wants hearing into strangulation

The lawyer for a man charged in a strangulation murder wants to get the ball rolling for a preliminary hearing.

John MacNaughton told Red Deer provincial court on Wednesday he has read a large volume of disclosure from the Crown and is ready to set a preliminary hearing date for his client Martin Munro, 36, who is charged with second-degree murder.

Court heard that MacNaughton will first have to meet with chief Crown prosecutor Anders Quist and another court official to schedule a pre-trial conference date to determine how much time will be needed for the preliminary.

Munro, who appeared on closed circuit television, returns to court on March 9 to confirm the date for the hearing.

Preliminaries are held to determine if there’s enough evidence to warrant the accused stand trial in Court of Queen’s Bench.

Jolyn Ten Hove, 37, of Red Deer also faces a second-degree murder charge and also appears again on March 9.

The accused were charged on Jan. 20, after the body of George William McDonald, 40, of Red Deer was discovered in a residence on Forest Close.

An autopsy revealed McDonald had been strangled.

Police alleged earlier that a fight broke out between two males in the residence.

Man wanted on 16 warrants arrested

A man wanted on 16 warrants was arrested by Red Deer City RCMP early Tuesday morning.

Police were on routine patrol in the Riverside Industrial area just before 4 a.m. when they saw Carl Krieger as a passenger in a vehicle.

The driver of the vehicle complied as police initiated a traffic stop.

In an attempt to conceal his identity, Krieger allegedly provided a false name to police and then fled the vehicle on foot.

Police were able to apprehend Krieger after a short foot case and he was arrested.

Krieger is currently in police custody awaiting a judicial interim release hearing to speak to his release and new charges from this incident.

He was wanted on various alleged criminal offences including possession of property obtained by crime, driving a motor vehicle while unauthorized, possession of a controlled substance, breach of probation, obstructing a police officer and failing to appear in court.

Warrant issued for man

A provincewide warrant has been issued for 32-year-old Terence Bigchild, wanted for an alleged sexual assault and sexual exploitation.

Bigchild is described as an aboriginal male, 1.7 metres tall (five feet five inches), weighs 84 kg (185 pounds), and has black hair and brown eyes.

Red Deer City RCMP say Bigchild is likely still in Central Alberta.

Anyone with information on Bigchild’s whereabouts is asked to contact their local police, or contact Central Alberta Crimestoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477 or submit a tip online at tipsubmit.com. If the information provided leads to an arrest, a cash reward of up to $2,000 may be given.

Open house on area structure plan

Red Deer residents are invited to an open house on Thursday regarding a proposed Neighbourhood Area Structure Plan for the Vanier East/North neighbourhood.

The open house takes place from 4 to 7 p.m. at St. Francis of Assisi Middle School at 321 Lindsay Ave.

The proposed land use concept plan looks at a 304-acre parcel bounded by the Lonsdale residential subdivision, Lancaster Green and Vanier Woods subdivisions to the west, 19th Street (Delburne Road) to the south, and the future 20th Avenue expressway to the east.

The plan gives details into the kind of development that would occur, including residential, commercial, community and spiritual facilities.

Once fully developed, the area would include about 1,813 dwelling units for a density of 17.83 dwelling units per hectare.

Anyone who needs a ride through Red Deer Transit’s Action Bus can call 403-309-8400.

Those unable to attend can call Hayley Mountstephen, senior planner with the City of Red Deer, at 403-406-8703 or email at haley.horvath@reddeer.ca. Comments will be accepted until Tuesday.

The plan can be found online at www.reddeer.ca

Fire at Caroline deemed accidental

The fire that gutted the building of a Caroline-based oilfield supply company has been deemed accidental.

Patrick Oslund, assistant fire chief with Clearwater Regional Fire Rescue Services, said work was being done on a truck in the shop of Red Rock Oilfield Construction when a spark caused the fire on Feb. 22.

“Liquids normally in a shop, they’re fairly combustible,” he said.

The building, located at 5119 50th St., and a number of vehicles in the shop were completely destroyed in the fire. The damage is estimated around $500,000.

Billowing black smoke was reported by nearby businesses on the day of the blaze and Oslund previously confirmed that acetylene and oxygen tanks as well as propane cylinders did explode.

Fire crews from Caroline, Spruce View and Leslieville responded to the fire, which took about 90 minutes to put out.

There were no injuries or evacuations.

Accused in truck theft denied bail

A Big Valley man charged with stealing a pickup truck in Pine Lake before he was arrested in Red Deer about week ago was denied bail in Red Deer court on Wednesday.

However, immediately following provincial court Judge John Holmes’ decision, the accused dismissed his lawyer Luke Kurata, who had just told the judge that his client wanted to plead not guilty and set a trial date as early as possible.

The 25-year-old with dyed red hair, returns to court today to “handle the case myself,” he told court.

The accused was charged on Feb. 23 with stealing the truck from Race Track Fuel in Pine Lake about 2:15 p.m., police said. Police advised Red Deer City RCMP that the truck was headed their way.

It was soon spotted at 19th Street and Taylor Drive in Red Deer.

An officer noted the vehicle ran two red lights before turning into a parking lot at Canadian Tire and Rona stores.

The accused and a co-accused were arrested and charged.

Court heard that police found about 36 kg of bundled copper wire in the truck that wasn’t present at the time it was reported stolen.

Charles Victor Foley is charged with theft of more than $5,000 and possession of stolen property.

Dana Sobelski, 38, of Big Valley was released from custody earlier and will appear in court on March 29 on charges of dangerous driving, theft of more than $5,000 and possessing stolen property.