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Trial in North Okanagan murder case won’t begin for more than a year

Jevon Smith, accused of second-degree murder, will stand trial Feb. 26, 2024
A man identified as Dakota Samoleski was shot and killed in a Spallumcheen shooting Sept. 20, 2021. Jevon Daniel Smith, born in 1975, is charged with second-degree murder and is set to stand trial Feb. 26, 2024. (Morning Star file photo)

A North Okanagan murder suspect will have to wait more than a year to stand trial.

Jevon Daniel Smith, born in 1975, is charged with second-degree murder in connection to the death of Dakota Samoleski, who died in a shooting in Spallumcheen on Sept. 20, 2021.

Smith appeared in B.C. Supreme Court in Vernon Tuesday, Jan. 3. According to Dan McLaughlin, communications counsel with the BC Prosecution Service, Smith’s trial date is set to begin on Feb. 26, 2024. Other dates for pre-trial matters were also set, including a pre-trial conference on Jan. 13, 2023.

Smith’s trial will be by judge and jury in Supreme Court. In March 2022, Smith opted to skip a preliminary inquiry — used to determine if there is enough evidence to proceed to trial — and will therefore head straight to trial.

On the day of Samoleski’s death, police were called to a Spallumcheen residence at 11:30 a.m. to reports of a possible shooting and a vehicle fleeing the area. A search for the suspect’s vehicle led police to Samoleski’s body in the 4500 block of Back Enderby Road, prompting a land and air search for the suspect in his killing.

Smith was arrested in Armstrong later that day, with assistance from the Southeast District Emergency Response Team.

Police say Samoleski and Smith are believed to have been known to each other.

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Brendan Shykora
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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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