Michael Martel, 46, who is facing a charge of first degree murder in connection with the death of Vesna Dumstrey-Soos, was represented by his lawyer in 100 Mile House provincial court on Jan. 12.
The 100 Mile House man is scheduled to appear via video stream in a Williams Lake courtroom on Feb. 10.
The judge heard a recommendation to transfer the accused to a pretrial custody facility in the Lower Mainland until that date so he can be closer to his lawyer and members of his family.
The investigation into the death of Dumstrey-Soos, 37, started when 100 Mile House RCMP received a call around 11:30 a.m. on Jan. 4, and they were asked to check on the welfare of an employee of the Cedar Crest Society of Community Living who uncharacteristically didn’t show up for work.
When RCMP checked the home in the 6000 block of Norman Road, they found Dumstrey-Soos.
Her death was treated as suspicious at the time and the RCMP North District Major Crime Unit (NDMCU) along with forensic experts were at the home on Jan. 5 to investigate and process the scene.
Following an intense five-hour search on Jan. 6, the NDMCU – with the assistance of the North District Emergency Response team, Air Services and local RCMP members – arrested Martel, who was a person of interest at the onset of the suspicious death investigation.
Martel appeared before a Justice of the Peace in the late afternoon on Jan. 7, and was remanded in custody until court appearance in 100 Mile House on Jan. 12.
Said NDMCU team leader RCMP Sgt. Todd Wiebe: “Through the co-ordinated effort of NDMCU, 100 Mile House RCMP, Cariboo Chilcotin Traffic Services, William’s Lake police service dog, Prince George Forensic Identification Section, and RCMP Air Services, this investigation progressed quickly resulting in the safe apprehension of the suspect.”
The 100 Mile House RCMP stated in a press release it believed this was an isolated incident where the two parties knew each other and the community was not at risk.
The local detachment noted that if people feel they have been impacted in any way by this incident to feel free to contact RCMP Victim Services at 250-395-0456.
This is the second tragic death the family has had to deal with in the past few years.
The last homicide in 100 Mile House was on the morning of Feb. 10, 2009 when a local woman was shot by a man during a domestic dispute at 370 Cedar Ave.
According to the news reports, the suspect then refused to lay down his weapon and was shot by police.