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Trial date set for Snelson

A new trial date has been set for Neil Snelson, the man previously charged with killing a Kelowna teenager in 1993.

Snelson will face trial for manslaughter next year, with jury selection expected to begin May 4, 2015 and a four-week trial to begin May 25. Only this time it will take place in Kamloops after he was a granted a change of venue.

The death of 19-year-old Jennifer Cusworth went unsolved for more than 15 years, until Snelson was arrested in 2009 when new DNA evidence linked him to her body.

At the time he admitted to having sex with her at a house party – the last place she was seen alive until her body was found beaten and strangled a few days later. But he denied killing her.

Snelson was initially convicted of manslaughter in 2011 after being found not guilty of both first and second degree murder. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison, but won an appeal shortly thereafter by arguing the judge in the case should have withheld some of the Crown’s evidence from the jury.

Snelson was released on bail in June on a $75,000 surety.

Jennifer’s mother Jean was not happy when Snelson was released, but she wasn’t surprised either.

"We're not happy that he's out roaming the streets, but I don't think there was any way they could have kept him in," she said at the time.

"The conditions are quite heavy as far as I'm concerned and that's fine with me."

Snelson is currently living with family members in Lake Country.


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