Coquitlam man David Hall, 57, is facing a charge of second-degree murder for the death of Kwikwetlem councillor Stephanie Patterson.
Patterson’s body was found in a rural area in Mission on Tuesday, four days after she was last seen in Coquitlam. She was 44.
Police had arrested Hall when Patterson was still considered a missing person. However, after finding further evidence, police arrested Hall for murder on Tuesday.
Local news that matters to you
No one covers the Tri-Cities like we do. But we need your help to keep our community journalism sustainable.
He was officially charged with second-degree murder on Wednesday evening, according to a release from the RCMP’s homicide division.
Kwikwetlem First Nation Chief Ron Giesbrecht thanked the community for their support amid the tragedy.
“The entire nation is grieving this tragic and sudden loss and we appreciate the outpouring of support, love and condolences we have been receiving from throughout the Lower Mainland,” Giesbrecht stated in the release.
‘The very least’
Speaking to the Dispatch on Thursday, Vanessa Wideski described the feeling of sadness pervading the community.
Spending some time in the community hall following Patterson’s death, Wideski said she was confronted by one question:
“What more can we do?”
A co-executive director with the Low Entropy Foundation, Wideski said she asked if she could do something to support Patterson’s four children.
After getting approval from band members, Wideski looked for community support through fundraising platform Zeffy.
“At the very least is, well, we can take care of the kids,” Wideski said. “Right now, they’re just depending on the goodness of the community.”
In the short-term, the campaign is about providing necessities for the children.
At press time, the initiative had raised $1,540. However, Patterson said she hopes it will be the beginning something more.
“Hopefully, something more will come of it,” Wideski said. “This is our small gesture to help in some way, shape or form, and hoping that it’ll grow beyond just a fundraising campaign.”
Wideski said she didn’t know exactly what that “something more” would be, only that something must be done to help make sure a similar tragedy never happens.
“If enough of us come together we can create something that will create significant, lasting change,” she said.