Foord murder case to move to preliminary inquiry

·1 min read

A preliminary inquiry into the criminal case against John Wendell Keyler for the murder of Sarah Foord will be scheduled in December.

Keyler appeared in Fort St. John provincial court by video on Nov. 9, where his lawyer Kelly Merrigan requested an adjournment to Dec. 3 to set a date for the inquiry, and for a second set of disclosure to be examined, including a lab report from RCMP.

A preliminary inquiry is held for the court to decide if there is enough evidence to convict the accused.

“My client will be seeking a preliminary inquiry,” Merrigan told court Monday. “Perhaps we should wait for the second disclosure package to come in this month, just to see if that affects my proposals for witnesses or other issues.”

Keyler, 35, was arrested and charged at the end of July following a two-week investigation into Foord's disappearance. Her remains were found July 24 in a remote location 75 kilometres north of Fort St. John.

Keyler is charged with second-degree murder and indignity to human remains, and he has not yet been arraigned on the charges to enter a plea. He remains in custody until he makes an application for bail.

Merrigan said he has a hard drive containing the first round of evidence disclosure.

Crown prosecutor Joseph Temple said it’s unlikely the murder case will go to trial anytime soon.

“I don’t imagine we’re going to be getting time until February of next year,” said Temple.

Keyler will appear next on Nov. 30 to consult with legal counsel for a separate set of gun possession charges.

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Tom Summer, Local Journalism Initiative, Alaska Highway News