The level of offence has yet to be updated for Joel Anderson of Trail, after the victim he is charged with assaulting died in hospital.
“Joel has not been formally charged yet in regard to the death of the senior (male),” Trail RCMP Sgt. Darren Oelke told the Times. “Crown is deciding what charge is appropriate – Manslaughter or Second Degree Murder. We expect a decision on this soon.”
Oelke says a murder charge will “depend on proving intent.”
In the meantime, the sergeant confirmed that Anderson will remain in jail on the strength of other charges.
Those include arson, aggravated assault, assault with a weapon, uttering threats and obstruction of a police officer.
“He has been in custody since all these incidents occurred,” Oelke confirmed. “He pled guilty to assaulting a police officer, uttering threats, and Breach of Probation – he received jail time for the time he has already been in custody.”
Oelke did not know where Anderson is being held, but said the closest facility is the Okanagan Correctional Centre in Oliver.
Anderson was 25 at the time of his violent crime spree through Trail last summer.
He was charged with arson after a Shaver’s Bench home went up in flames in the early hours of Aug. 22.
In addition to Arson and Break and Enter into the Trail home, police charged him with numerous other offences (unrelated to the senior) that included Assault Causing Bodily Harm, and Uttering Threats.
After the initial arrest, police continued to investigate and subsequently charged Anderson with two more counts of Uttering Threats, Obstruction of a Police Officer and the Aggravated Assault of an elderly male.
The morning of Aug. 22, Greater Trail police received calls of a man down in the middle of Bay Avenue near Highway 3B in the downtown area
Officers arrived on scene to find the unconscious victim, 78, laying in the road, bleeding from the head.
The senior was transported to Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital where he died about a month later.