The Chilliwack Progress from Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada on October 20, 1995 · Page 3
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The Chilliwack Progress from Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada · Page 3

Publication:
Location:
Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada
Issue Date:
Friday, October 20, 1995
Page:
Page 3
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Murder charge shocking By Robert Freeman Staff Reporter Friends and associates of Bill Hughes can't believe he has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of his wife, Gertrude Patricia Hughes. "I would never have expected it," said one man, who asked not to be named. The 53-year-old was always upbeat, full of life, with an infectiously positive altitude, sources close to Hughes say. But police investigators believe Hughes and his wife entered into a mutual suicide pact following financial problems with the couple's delivery service on Airport Road. Hughes has long been active in Chilliwack's community affairs, volunteering for a variety of community activities, and most recently raising funds for the blind with a tandem bicycle ride. His 50-year-old wife Trudy was the former executive director of the Valley Haven Guest Home. The Welsh-bom Hughes, with his ruddy complexion and shock of white hair and full beard, was perhaps best known for his work with troubled youth as an Outward Bound instructor. Hughes had suffered from a heart problem during his youth which left him perpetually tired, but he overcame that handicap and eventually won a chance to represent his school at the British Army Outward Bound School in Wales. He trained as a furniture designer and eventually joined Her Majesty's Grenadier Guards and served a tour of duty at the Tower of London. When he eventually came to Canada, he worked as a government consultant on wilderness training and helped set up Outward Bound Canada. Sources say as recently as last weekend Hughes seemed in a good mood and there was no indication of trouble on the horizon stemming from financial problems at the delivery service. Outside the courthouse yesterday grief-stricken family members, their eyes red and swollen, declined comment. THE CHILLIWACK PROGRESS WEEKENDER, Friday, October 20, 1995 3 Abby teen killer says He'll strike again By Robert Freeman and Christopher Foulds Staff Reporters Abbotsford police believe they may have a killer on the line. And from what they are hearing on the telephone, they fear the killer - or killers - may strike again. Police said yesterday they have received "several disturbing telephone calls" from a man believed responsible for the killing of 16-year-old Tanya Smith last Friday night and the brutal attack on her friend Misty Cockerill. Police investigators are also follow- ing up leads that suggest there are two suspects involved. Because of the possibility of another attack, police are warning area residents that "imminent danger still exists in the community as the suspect (or suspects) are still at large and are very dangerous. "Parents are urged to keep their children off the street at night and all people should avoid walking alone or in small groups in the evening. "These precautions are necessary until this person (or persons) can be apprehended." And that warning goes for Chilliwack too, said Abbotsford it:?M Const. Elly Sawchuk. "We can't guarantee that this guy is going to stay in Abbotsford," she said yesterday. Meanwhile, police patrols have been increased in the area of Bevan Avenue and Ware Road where the two teens were attacked sometime last Friday night. Smith's unclad body was found in the Vedder River near Yarrow early Saturday morning. Autopsy results show she died from drowning. Cockerill staggered into the MSA Hospital in Abbotsford about three hours later. Cockerill, who is under police protection at an undisclosed location, was able to give a partial de-n scription J of her auai.A.t'i, despite slipping in and out of consciousness due to severe injuries. Abbotsford police still don't know how the 16-year-old got to the hospital, and are asking anyone who may have seen her or helped her that night to call them at 859-5225 or Crimestoppers at 855-TIPS. Also being sought is the help of an Abbotsford couple seen in the area of the attack at about midnight Friday. Anyone with any information on the case is asked to call those numbers or the Chilliwack RCMP detachment at 792-461 1. A composite drawing of one suspect was released late yester- Composite drawing of a man described as the killer of Abbotsford teenager Tanya Smith. day by police. The man is described as being a very tall, thin white male in his late 30s, with reddish hair balding on top. He has thin lips and may have a tattoo on one of his forearms. Sawchuk said police were un able to pinpoint the location of the calls from the killer, but they were made from Abbotsford. "The conversation that was had, what he stated was that he would do it again," Sawchuk said. "He's a very sick person." Searchers hunt for shoes By Mark Falkenberg Staff Reporter Police are hunting for a missing pair of shoes belonging to murdered teen Tanya Smith. Nearly two dozen searchers spent Thursday morning along the banks of the Vedder River where Smith s body was found, looking for the shoes and for any other evidence that could lead them to her killer. About 20 people, including RCMP officers and local Search and Rescue mem bers, searched the area about two kilometres south of the Keith Wilson bridge. From 9:30 a.m. until about 2 p.m., searchers used weedwhackers and pruning saws to cut swaths on either side of footpaths leading to the river in the hope of turning up any evidence the killer might have tossed into the bushes. Sections of the brush were also cut away at points along a road below the dike to look for clues. Whether anything of value to the case was found during the search was not known as of press time Friday. - Photo by Rick CollinJ Investigators search along the Vedder River Men are more likely to be murdered than women - academic By Mark Falkenberg Staff Reporter The recent string of murders in Chilliwack and Abbotsford has sent a wave of shock and fear through the public. But B.C.'s appalling murder rate is nothing new, says a Simon Fraser University professor. While crime, including violent crime, has on the whole been declining in Canada, this province has held on to its dubious distinction of having the highest rate of killings in the country, says Dr. Ezzat Fattah, a criminologist specializing in crime trends. In the past two years, B.C. and Manitoba have had homicide rates approaching 3.2 per 100,000 people. "Crime in general increases when one moves from east to west," he adds. However, "observing the phenomenon is always easier than explaining it," and no one knows for sure why this increase happens, Fattah says. "There must be something about life here in B.C. that has this effect on crime rates." The statistics are more puzzling in light of the fact that unemployment rates go down the farther west you go. This might explain high theft rates, Fattah says, explaining that "certain crimes are related not to unemployment and poverty but to affluence, because there is a link between crime and opportunity." It does nothing, however, to explain high rates of murder and other violence. And while three out of four of Chilliwack's most recent homicide victims have been female, Fattah says male- victims continue to outnumber female in B.C. Out-of every 100 victims, about 45 are female while 55 are male. Each week The Progress publishes the names of all those convicted of criminal offences in Chilliwack provincial court. Oct 6 Thomas George Lea, 33, received a seven-day sentence and three weeks probation on a charge of being at large without a lawful excuse. Nikolas Hatzidimitriou, 22, received a two-month sentence on two counts of failure to comply with a probation order. Nathan Robert Therrien, 20, received a five-day sentence, a $200 fine and six months probation on two counts of narcotics possession. Oct 10 Edward Alec Mandeville, 27, received a one-year suspended sentence and a 40-hour community service work order on an assault charge. 11 JED 0 DOCKET Sean Kyle Blair, 24, was fined $100 on a narcotics possession charge. David Paul Legere received a three-month sentence and three years probation on a criminal harrassment j-O charge, f A Oct. 11 Colin Ryan Bullock, 21, was fined $500 and banned from driving for one year on a dan gerous driving charge. Timothy David Morgan, 24, was fined a total $600, placed on six months probation and ordered to pay a $90 victim's impact surcharge on charges of obstructing a peace officer and narcotics possession. Oct 12 Christian Joseph Barbier, 39, was sentenced to three days in jail and fined $100 on charges of failure to appear in court and narcotics possesion. Oct 16 Glen Lome Johnston, 42, was fined $500 and banned from driving for one year on a charge of driving while over the .08 limit. J, o

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