Update: First-degree murder charge laid in Daniel Levesque case
The Revelstoke Times Review can report that Joshua Bredo has been arrested on a charge of first-degree murder in connection to the August, 2011 death of Revelstoke native Daniel Levesque.
Although news of Bredo's Dec. 21 arrest and charge has been disseminated via social media in Revelstoke, official confirmation of the charges relies on scant court documents.
A court document posted on Dec. 21 said Bredo faced a first-degree murder charge to an event dated to Levesque's death in Victoria.
The Times Review was not aware of Bredo's arrest in Alberta on Friday until after the court registry closed.
Since the notice of an 'information' court document was posted by the courts, a subsequent notice of a publication ban on the proceedings in a Victoria court has been imposed.
The documents say Bredo will appear in a Victoria court on Monday, Dec. 24 for a proceeding to set a trial date.
Bredo was originally charged with second-degree murder for the Aug. 3, 2011 death of Daniel Levesque, 20.
Levesque was found dead in a Victoria, B.C. condominium.
However, the charges were stayed on Dec. 9, 2011, after a report by pathologist Dr. Carol Lee concluded Levesque died of cocaine toxicity. The report also said Levesque had two circular wounds on the back of his head, consistent with being struck by a hammer.
The pathologist's report has been the centre of controversy, with family members publicly questioning a medical report that indicated death attributed to a drug overdose while according to the same report Levesque was also struck in the head with a hammer-like weapon twice.
The Dec. 21 date on Friday is significant because it was the final day investigators could hold onto key evidence in the matter; the date was the end of a third extension granted by a judge to hold onto evidence in the case. Bredo's lawyers had applied for the items to be returned.
An order issued in a Victoria court on Dec. 11, by Judge Ernest Quantz allowed investigators to hold onto a BlackBerry mobile phone, a shirt, jeans, a ring and a bracelet belonging to Bredo until Dec. 21.
The Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit (VIIMCU) issued a statement on the evening of Dec. 22 indicating Bredo had been arrested in Okotoks, Alberta. "VIIMCU continued their investigation into this incident," said RCMP Constable Margo Downey of VIIMCU. "As a result of new information, Crown counsel laid a first degree murder charge on Friday."
The VIIMCU also said police would not be commenting more on the case as it is now before the courts.
Bredo is in custody in Victoria.
The Times Review will update this story online in the coming days.
— with notes by Alex Cooper/Revelstoke Times Review
This story was updated on Dec. 23 to include a police statement issued by the VIIMCU late in the evening on Dec. 22. The comment replaces a paragraph stating police had not returned calls from the Revelstoke Times Review following news of the new charge.
In addition, links to previous stories were added on Dec. 23.