Thirteen demonstrators laid signs and demanded justice for lost sisters April 22, 2021, as Curits Wayne Sagmoen’s cop assault charge went before the court. (Jennifer Smith - Vernon Morning Star)

Thirteen demonstrators laid signs and demanded justice for lost sisters April 22, 2021, as Curits Wayne Sagmoen’s cop assault charge went before the court. (Jennifer Smith - Vernon Morning Star)

Sagmoen to stand trial in Vernon for cop assault

Trial is estimated to last five days, defence lawyer says

An estimated five-day trial is in the future for a high-profile North Okanagan man Curtis Wayne Sagmoen for an assault charge involving a peace officer.

In a call Thursday, defence lawyer Lisa Helps said she’s sent a detailed charter notice to the Crown.

More than a dozen demonstrators returned to the Vernon courts calling for justice for lost sisters April 22, as the 121-day-old matter went before the courts once again. It had been delayed several times since Sagmoen’s first scheduled arraignment hearing which was slated for Feb. 11, 2021.

Among those dressed in red and chanting outside the courthouse was Bill Darnell.

Fittingly, considering it was Earth Day; Darnell is a Greenpeace founder who calls Vernon home. But just like his battles to better the environment, he too wants to see justice served in the name of those who have been lost. Like Traci Genereaux, whose remains were found on the Sagmoen farm in 2017.

No charges have been laid in connection with Genereaux’s death.

The incident before the courts Thursday coincided with a police search warrant at Sagmoen’s place of residence on his parent’s Salmon River Road property on Oct. 29, 2020.

Earlier that month, police visited the farm after an alert of suspicious activity. At that time, RCMP released a photo of Sagmoen — who is notorious for crimes against sex trade workers — and issued a warning in the interest of public safety.

An arrest warrant was briefly issued for Sagmoen man after his lawyer failed to appear April 8. It was rescinded hours later after defence lawyer Lisa Helps made an appearance in the afternoon, Crown communications counsel Dan McLaughlin said.

That day, prominent Indigenous rights activists joined dozens of protesters. Among them was Gladys Radek of Terrace — she was one of the activists involved in drawing initial attention to the Highway of Tears, a corridor from Prince George to Prince Rupert that has been a locus of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls for more than 50 years.

A Gitxsan/Wet’suwet’en First Nations woman, Radek said the delays in Sagmoen’s hearing reflect a broader trend in cases of missing and murdered women and girls, pointing to the national inquiry that concluded two years ago and the many women who have gone missing since the inquiry’s final report.

“It’s a waiting game with the justice system.”

Before the matter moves further, a date must be set for the mandatory criminal pre-trial. The date for this pre-trail will be set Monday, May 3, at 9:30 a.m.

*Editor’s note: A previous version of this story said a not guilty plea was entered. In a charter application, as is this case, no plea is entered. This story has been corrected to reflect the proper information.

READ MORE: Warrant for Sagmoen’s arrest rescinded

READ MORE: ‘There needs to be more accountability’: Protesters impatient with Sagmoen court process


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Court

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

Just Posted

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
65 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Overall, B.C. is seeing a decrease in COVID-19 cases

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a ‘person of interest’ in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
RCMP identify ‘person of interest’ in Kootenay National Park suspicious death

Police are looking for Philip Toner, who was known to a woman found dead near Radium last week

The southern mountain caribou, an iconic species for the Splatsin First Nation, is threatened with extinction, much to the dismay of the First Nation. (Province of B.C. photo)
Splatsin First Nation concerned over dwindling caribou herd

Southern mountain caribou at risk of extinction, will struggle to recover without habitat protection and restoration action - report

FILE - In this April 19, 2021, file photo, Keidy Ventura, 17, receives her first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in West New York, N.J. States across the country are dramatically scaling back their COVID-19 vaccine orders as interest in the shots wanes, putting the goal of herd immunity further out of reach. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
5 more deaths, 131 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

Those 18-years and older in high-transmission neighbourhoods can register for the vaccine

Sisters Audrey Cunningham and Donna Erdman, join the Vernon Kalamalka Chorus singing in their cars, tuned into the radio, under the direction of Debbie Parmenter. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
VIDEO: Okanagan choir steers around COVID with ‘carbershop’ twist

Singers find a unique way to practice during pandemic restrictions

Keith MacIntyre - BC Libertarian
Penticton’s Keith MacIntyre new leader of the B.C. Libertarian Party

The Penticton businessman was voted in by members of the party on May 8

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a 'person of interest' in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
Man sought in suspicious Kootenay death found in Lake Country

Philip Toner is a person of interest in the death of Brenda Ware

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP reported to 287 mental health calls between Jan. 1, 2021, and May 1. (Black Press files)
‘It’s not the police’s responsibility to deal with mental health calls’: Vernon RCMP

RCMP remind public to take care of mental health and well-being, while better solutions are sought

A Falkland man will present a 600+ signature petition to the Columbia Shuswap Regional District board Thursday, May 20, opposing dog control in Electoral Area D, which includes Falkland, Silver Creek, Salmon Valley and Ranchero/Deep Creek. (File photo)
600-plus sign Falkland man’s petition against dog control

Similar bylaw rejected by 200 public hearing attendees when topic came up 9 years ago

Thompson Rivers University campus is in Kamloops, B.C. (KTW file photo)
Thompson Rivers the 1st B.C. university to supply free menstrual products

The university will offer the products this September

Fraser Health is using ‘targeted’ vaccination clinics in high-risk areas of the Lower Mainland. (Fraser Health photo)
B.C.’s COVID-19 decrease continues, 515 new cases Tuesday

426 seriously ill people in hospital, up from 415 Monday

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP reported to 287 mental health calls between Jan. 1, 2021, and May 1. (Black Press files)
‘It’s not the police’s responsibility to deal with mental health calls’: Vernon RCMP

RCMP remind public to take care of mental health and well-being, while better solutions are sought

Notes of hope, encouragement and camaraderie were left on the message board inside the kitchen of TacoTime. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Adiós, Taco Tuesday: Kelowna residents flock to TacoTime on restaurant’s final day

‘We don’t need another Starbucks. We need tacos on Tuesday, with extra hot sauce’

Most Read