Man accused in Kamloops murder claims woman died during rough sex

A Fraser Valley man stands trial for first-degree murder in connection with the 2016 death of a woman

  • Jan. 20, 2020 2:00 p.m.

-Kamloops this Week

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following story contains graphic material that may not be suitable for all readers.

A Fraser Valley man standing trial for first-degree murder in connection with the 2016 death of a woman found under a mattress in a Kamloops hotel room told police her death was the result of rough sex gone too far — after claiming the death was the result of accidental suffocation and that the victim had attacked him.

Debra Novacluse, 52, was found dead in a first-floor room at the Super 8 Motel on Hugh Allan Drive in Aberdeen on Aug. 27, 2016.

David Albert Miller, now 69, was arrested days later in Ontario, about an hour west of Brockville.

For a week, those involved in Miller’s B.C. Supreme Court trial have been watching and listening to recordings made by police in the hours after Miller’s arrest.

READ MORE: Third woman files sexual harassment suit against former Kelowna Mountie

In court on Monday, a videotaped interview showed Miller admitting to having caused Novacluse’s death, though he offered a number of explanations that changed under questioning from Kamloops RCMP Sgt. Mark Davidson.

Miller initially denied having ever been with Novacluse in Kamloops. He then said she had been with him, but he denied killing her. Over the course of the interview, Miller eventually admitted he killed Novacluse, wrapped her body in a sleeping bag and hid it beneath the mattress in his hotel room.

Initially, Miller said the death was a result of accidental suffocation. He then said he was acting in self-defence after she attacked him. Later, he told Davidson she died following rough sex.

“She wants you to do things to her,” Davidson said in the video. “You’ve already said your equipment’s not working that great. So what happened? We’ve come this far, man.”

“I realized I choked her too much,” Miller replied.

“It was a lot more than choking, though, right, Dave?” Davidson asked.

“She started bleeding,” Miller replied, noting he then “cleaned up” and left as fast as he could.

Crown prosecutor Monica Fras said in her opening statement last week that Novacluse’s body was found beneath a blood-soaked mattress.

READ MORE: Suspect arrested in brazen North Okanagan armed robbery

Miller had previously told police he travelled to Kamloops in August 2016 after having an argument with his wife at a campsite near Hope. Novacluse had been a friend of Miller’s.

Court has heard Miller fled Kamloops in Novacluse’s vehicle, abandoning it in Calgary before flying to Ontario, where he was arrested by Kamloops Mounties on Sept. 1, 2016.

Miller’s defence lawyer is challenging the voluntariness of the statement he made to police. A voir dire on that issue — a trial within a trial to determine eligibility if evidence — is expected to end early this week.

Miller’s judge-alone trial is scheduled to end in mid-February.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Two new COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health

The total number of Interior Health cases since the beginning of the pandemic is now at 522

Four 100 Mile-based Stormriders deployed to California

There they will join thousands of firefighters working to contain over 25 major wildfires

Police impound tiny home, trailer en route to the Yukon

A Vancouver Island driver was pulled over on Highway 97 after serious concerns with his custom-built trailer.

UPDATED: Crews dealing with power outages in South Cariboo

BC Hydro crews are working on restoring power to 63 customers on Mahood Lake Road.

B.C. records 98 more COVID-19 cases, most in Lower Mainland

One new senior home outbreak, Surrey Memorial outbreak over

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

$250K reward offered as investigation continues into Sea to Sky Gondola vandalism

Police also asking for specific footage of Sea to Sky highway around time of incident

Trudeau ‘disappointed’ by RCMP treatment of Sikh officers over mask issue

World Sikh Organization of Canada said taking Sikh officers off the front lines constitutes discrimination

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Liberals reach deal with NDP on COVID-19 aid bill, likely averting election

NDP and the Liberals have reached an agreement on COVID-19 sick-leave

Money laundering inquiry delayed over of B.C. election: commissioner

Austin Cullen says the hearings will start again on Oct. 26

2 British Columbians arrested, 3 at large in massive Alberta drug bust

Eight people are facing 33 charges in what police have dubbed Project Incumbent

Most Read