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Mounties in North Vancouver say a woman has died after being stabbed and someone who knew her has been arrested as a suspect. They say officers were responded to a report of a disturbance inside an apartment building in the Lower Lonsdale area shortly after 11 yesterday morning, where they found the woman suffering from stab wounds. The RCMP say officers and paramedics tried to save her, but she was later pronounced dead at the scene. Police say the stabbing is believed to be isolated, and anyone with information is asked to call the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team.

A jury has begun deliberating in the trial of an escaped inmate charged with first-degree murder in the killing of a Vancouver Island man. Sixty-year-old Martin Payne was killed a day after James Lee Busch and another inmate walked away from William Head Institution in Metchosin in summer 2019. In her closing statement, Crown attorney Chandra Fisher told the jury the pair were “inseparable” and both of them would have been needed to carry out the crime. Busch’s lawyer Ryan Drury told the jury a lack of blood spatter on his client’s clothes means he either wasn’t in the house, didn’t take part in the murder, or his only involvement was in cleaning up the crime scene.

The Opposition Liberals say the BC government has indicated it plans to freeze the salaries of members of the legislature next year. It’s a move the Liberals had called for earlier this fall as a show of solidarity with people struggling to make ends meet at a time of high inflation. MLA salaries are tied to changes in the consumer price index and the basic annual compensation listed for this year is just over 115-thousand dollars. Opposition house leader Todd Stone has said the previously planned six to 10 per cent increases could have resulted 10-thousand-dollar raises.

BC’s public safety minister and solicitor general says he expects to receive a plan from the city of Surrey to keep the RCMP as its police force later this week. A statement from Mike Farnworth says he and the province’s director of police services will review the city’s plan to ensure it meets the requirements of the Police Act and continues to provide safe and effective policing for the community. Surrey council voted this week to send the plan to the province for review and approval, saying it would save 235-million dollars over five years. A statement from Surrey police, which is well into its transition, says the report overestimates how many of its officers would join the RCMP and doesn’t consider 100-million dollars in costs already been incurred.

The BC Court of Appeal has upheld a lower court decision that two events with an Indigenous smudging ceremony, hoop dance and prayer held at a Vancouver Island elementary school seven years ago did not breach a family’s religious freedoms. Candice Servatius filed a petition for judicial review of the school district’s actions, alleging the Nuu-chah-nulth (new-CHAH’-nulth) demonstrations held in Port Alberni took place without parental consent or sufficient notice to opt her children out. She appealed when the B-C Supreme Court ruled against her in 2020, and her appeal was dismissed this week in a ruling that says it is — quote — “uncontroversial that public educational institutions need to be involved in reconciliation.” Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council president Judith Sayers says she is pleased with the Appeal Court’s decision, but she’s disappointed the issue went all the way to the province’s highest court before it was resolved.