Case drags on for murder suspect

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

A High Prairie man charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of Sucker Creek man just over one year ago on Nov. 19, 2021 is no closer to having the matter dealt with in court.
Travis Myles Melnyk, who was 40 at the time of the alleged crime and also faces a second charge of unlawful confinement, appeared with duty counsel Harry Jong in High Prairie provincial court Dec. 12.
Court heard Melnyk was trying to hire a new lawyer, Jong told provincial court Judge D.R. Shynkar.
“He’s went through eight lawyers,” said Jong.
Melnyk told court he has yet to a have a bail hearing meaning he is sitting at the Edmonton Remand Centre doing dead time as the case drags on.
Jong suggested putting the matter over one month but Judge Shynkar decided one week was enough.
Jong added one lawyer Melnyk spoke to wanted $100,000 to take the case.
Melnyk opposed the one-month delay.
“It’s been over a year already,” he told court.
Court heard another problem has arisen because some Legal Aid lawyers are refusing to travel to High Prairie from Edmonton to conduct any cases because they are not getting paid mileage.
The case was moving along earlier this year. March 14, the matter was set for preliminary inquiry by Judge G.R. Ambrose for Feb. 28 to March 3, 2023 but Melnyk and his lawyer, Brian Hurley, have since parted ways.
Melnyk was charged in the death of a man, 35, after Lakeshore Regional Police Service and High Prairie RCMP responded to a call Nov. 19, 2021 at about 5:30 p.m. at Sucker Creek First Nation, reported RCMP Media Relations Officer Cpl. Susan Richter. Police did not release his name.
Alberta RCMP Major Crimes immediately took over the investigation.

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