Crown looks to ‘build the jigsaw puzzle’ on Day 2 of Sagmoen trial

Defence questions whether search warrant police executed was obtained on solid grounds Thursday

The trial of Curtis Sagmoen, accused of threatening a sex worker at gun point near Falkland in August 2017, continued in BC Supreme Court in Vernon on Thursday, Dec. 5, and is set to enter day two this morning.

Justice Alison Beames heard the full submission of defence counsel Lisa Helps and the partial submission of Crown Attorney Simone McCallum.

Helps’ central argument hinged on identification — or lack thereof, as she argued — of Sagmoen as the person who threatened the complainant.

The defence also focused on whether the search warrant police executed when searching Sagmoen’s property was obtained on reasonable grounds.

“There needs to be a nexus between the crime committed and the place the police seek to search,” Helps said.

Helps argued there was no such nexus to be found in the Information to Obtain (ITO) document, which police officers file to a judge when seeking to obtain a search warrant.

Helps scrutinized an affidavit that contained statements from neighbours of the Sagmoen property, which were used by police as grounds for obtaining the warrant. Those statements she dismissed as “small-town gossip.”

Leaving aside the statements she deemed to be hearsay, Helps argued repeatedly that the only description of Sagmoen police gave to connect him to the crime scene was that he was wearing “a black T-shirt and black pants.”

The Crown’s submission was limited to the final 45 minutes of the hearing, but McCallum had time to dismiss the idea that there is an identification issue concerning Sagmoen.

“Not every breadcrumb of evidence is the smoking gun or the thing that will make or break the warrant application,” said McCallum, adding that little pieces of identification start to “build the jigsaw puzzle that brings Mr. Sagmoen within the police’s frame for investigation.”

In October 2017, the remains of Tracy Genereaux were found on the property of Sagmoen’s family. So far no charges have been laid relation to her death.

In the morning before court came into session, a protest was held by supporters of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls on the steps of the Vernon Law Courts.

The trial continues Friday, Dec. 6, at 9:30 a.m. and will carry on for two weeks.

READ MORE: Sagmoen expected in Vernon courts for trial start

READ MORE: Justice rules police did not coerce statement from Sagmoen


Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
Follow us: Facebook | Twitter

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

Just Posted

First VegFest of the South Okanagan coming to Penticton

The festival is scheduled for Aug. 23, with speakers and entertainment all day.

Penticton Vees score a 9-1 win against Merritt Centennials

The win is their third in a row in their latest streak.

‘Lift for Wills’ community fundraiser to support Penticton boy fighting cancer

This Sunday, stop by World Gym Penticton for by-donation drop-in classes, a silent auction, more.

Petition to install safety barriers on Hwy 97 garners over 500 supporters

Yesterday a fatal collision on Hwy 97 claimed the life of one individual

Oliver Health Centre celebrates expansion of ER

Minister of Health was in Oliver for the official opening of the improved emergency department

‘Like an ATM’: World’s first biometric opioid-dispensing machine launches in B.C.

First-of-its-kind dispensing machine unveiled in the Downtown Eastside with hopes of curbing overdose deaths

Update: Collision halts highway traffic west of Revelstoke

Drive BC also reported a vehicle incident 10 km east of Golden.

Canucks extend home win streak to 8 with 4-1 triumph over Sharks

Victory lifts Vancouver into top spot in NHL’s Pacific Division

BC Green Party leader visits northern B.C. pipeline protest site

Adam Olsen calls for better relationship between Canada, British Columbia and First Nations

Priest Camp near Summerland was created in 1845

Agreement formed between Grand Chief Nicola (1793-1859) and Father Giovanni Nobili (1812-1856)

‘Extensive’ work planned at Big Bar landslide ahead of salmon, steelhead migration

Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan visited the site of the slide from June

B.C. society calls out conservation officer after dropping off bear cub covered in ice

Ice can be seen in video matted into emaciated bear cub’s fur

Royal deal clears way for Harry, Meghan part-time Canada move: experts

Keith Roy of the Monarchist League of Canada said the deal is exactly what Harry and Meghan asked for

Most Read