5.3 C
Elmira
Friday, April 3, 2020
Connecting Our Communities

Kitchener man charged in Howlett murder

TRENDING

News Briefs

Woolwich nixes traffic islands Displeased with the troublesome pedestrian islands installed during the Region of Waterloo’s reconstruction of Church Street...

Elmira company producing hand sanitizer as virus hits

Usually focused on your taste buds rather than your finger tips, Elmira-based Murphy’s Law Distillery has branched out...

A message from the publisher

Clearly, these are challenging times for all of us. Our world is more interconnected than ever, making facing...

Avoid all non-essential public gatherings, health officials advise

There is no safe number when it comes to public gatherings, says the region’s acting medical officer of...

THIS WEEK

Elmira
light rain
5.3 ° C
7.2 °
3.3 °
81 %
3.1kmh
90 %
Fri
6 °
Sat
10 °
Sun
12 °
Mon
15 °
Tue
14 °

A Kitchener man is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Elmira’s Erin Howlett.

Michael John William Ball, 22, appeared in bail court on Thursday after being held in custody overnight after police made the arrest Wednesday. He was arraigned on a total of 36 charges including committing an indignity to a human body, in connection to the murder.

The arrest came a week after police confirmed the 28-year-old Elmira woman was a victim of homicide. Investigators say Howlett and Ball were acquaintances. Waterloo Regional Police are not anticipating any more arrests in the case, said spokesperson Olaf Heinzel.

“We believe the person who was arrested is solely responsible for her death unless new information comes about, but at this point that appears to be the case. We just wanted to make the community aware of an important development in the case.”

Other charges against Ball include and more than 20 weapons- and drug-related charges unconnected to the murder case.

Family and friends of the victim were in court Thursday to hear the charges. Howlett’s brother Dane Howlett did not expect the case to come to a head this soon.

“It was difficult for me and my family to see the accused in court face to face. A lot of emotions are experienced when that happens.

“I’m putting my faith in our justice system and I’m hoping if this person is responsible he does get punished to the full extent of the law.”

Ball was remanded in custody after the day-long proceedings and ordered to have no contact with several potential witnesses and people close to the victim. His next court appearance is scheduled for November 26.

Police confirmed Howlett died as a result of foul play on November 15.

Due to evidence collected on scene where she was found in Kitchener and help from the public, detectives were able to confirm their suspicions that the 28-year-old met with foul play in July.

Police recovered Howlett’ s body July 5 from the Grand River near Riverbend Drive in Kitchener after a group of teenagers made the discovery. Since then, police have explored a number of leads and reached out to the public.

Ball posted a message on his Facebook page on July 7 which read: “Rest In Peace Erin, you will be truly missed and never forgotten. My heart goes out to your family.”

Howlett, who worked at Elmira’s Sip ‘N Bite Restaurant was reported missing when she failed to contact her family after heading to Toronto for a short trip over the long weekend. She was last seen alive on June 27.

The accused lived in a basement apartment of a Chestnut Street home where two search warrants executed earlier in the investigation, police confirmed.

Alos during the investigation, images of two potential witnesses, a man and a woman were released by the WRPS earlier in the year, but the individuals were found to have no connection to the case. Police and a Gravenhurst underwater unit also searched Trillium Natural Area in Kitchener in connection to Howlett on October 2. Police also asked the public’s help to locate Howlett’s green Coach bag, an item likely with her prior to her death and a possible clue.

Investigators reviewed the results of the post-mortem and forensic analysis, but did not release any details. The cause of death is known to police, but that information will not be released at this time to preserve the integrity of upcoming judicial proceedings. Tips and the sharing of other case-pertinent information is still being welcomed and members of the community can contact homicide detectives at 519-650-8500, ext. 8767 or leave a tip anonymously with Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to The Observer's online community. Pseudonyms are not permitted. By submitting a comment, you accept that The Observer has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner The Observer chooses. Please note that The Observer does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our submission guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

LIVING HERE

Sketches of our town

Slowing down and taking in our surroundings – the proverbial stopping to smell the roses – is oft discussed but seldom acted on. The measures put in place to slow the coronavirus...

In Print. Online. In Pictures. In Depth.

You obviously love community journalism. Thanks for visiting today. If you have a great local story, let us know.

Woolwich approves waiving late fees in response to pandemic

Measures such as waiving late-payment charges, adopted last week by Woolwich council, may be just the first steps as the township deals...
- Advertisement -