Man accused of killing woman in Windsor arrested in U.S.

Windsor police said they are seeking Jitesh Bhogal’s extradition to Canada

A man accused of raping and killing a Windsor, Ont., woman while her nine-year-old son lay frightened in the next room has been arrested in the U.S., according to documents filed in an American court.

Jitesh Bhogal, 27, is charged with first-degree murder, aggravated sexual assault and break and enter in the death of Autumn Taggart on June 10. He was arrested in Washington state this month, and Windsor police said they are seeking his extradition to Canada.

“Our investigators did a tremendous amount of round-the-clock work on this case,” said Windsor police Sgt. Steve Betteridge. “Teamwork with our counterparts in the U.S. ultimately ended with a successful arrest.”

Betteridge declined to discuss particulars of the force’s investigation but documents filed by American attorneys in Washington state contained detailed allegations that have yet to be tested in court.

In a complaint filed the day before Bhogal was taken into custody, State Attorney Annette Hayes mapped out a chronology that she attributes largely to the Windsor police.

According to that document, 31-year-old Taggart, who police said was also known as Maya Madolyn, was last seen alive on June 9 when she went shopping with her son and her son’s father.

After being dropped off at home with her child, Taggart continued to exchange text messages with her son’s father throughout the evening, the complaint said. There was no evidence to suggest she left her home later that day.

RELATED: Suspect arrested and charged for assault on autistic man

According to statements Taggart’s son provided to police, someone entered the apartment at some point before Sunday morning, the complaint alleged.

“An unknown male entered his bedroom and told him to stay in bed and go to sleep,” the complaint alleged. “(The boy) had never seen the man before … (The child) heard a girl screaming sometime after the man entered his room, but did not get up to investigate because he was scared.”

When Taggart’s son eventually got up for the day, according to the complaint, he found his mother still in bed. He spent the day eating cookies and watching videos, but eventually texted his father on Sunday evening to say that “mommy won’t wake up,” the complaint said.

The boy’s father came to the apartment and was among those who reported Taggart’s death to police, the complaint said.

The document also contains details of an interview conducted with Taggart’s neighbour days after her death. The woman told police that she and her boyfriend purchased and used cocaine with Bhogal in the early hours of June 10, the complaint alleged.

The phone number used during the drug transaction was later matched to one registered to Bhogal, the complaint alleged.

The neighbour told police that Bhogal’s vehicle was parked outside Taggart’s building for at least a couple of hours and was gone by roughly 6:15 a.m., the complaint alleged.

Hayes’ complaint said police noted that an SUV parked near the building appeared to have a footprint on the roof, that architectural features of the building offered easy hand or footholds if someone wished to climb the walls, and that the balcony of Taggart’s third-floor unit appeared to have sustained damage.

“A person could have climbed from the top of the SUV onto an exterior balcony,” it reads.

RELATED: Family killed by alleged ‘stalker’ in triple murder-suicide

Bhogal, a Canadian citizen, lived and worked in Michigan just over the border from Windsor, the complaint said. He allegedly travelled to Washington state where his parents live near Seattle and expressed a desire to relocate there soon after Taggart’s death, even going so far as to obtain a state driver’s license, the document said.

Meanwhile, investigators in Windsor performed an autopsy on Taggart and found evidence of blunt-force trauma, sexual assault and possible neck compression, the complaint said.

Authorities extracted a DNA sample that contained genetic material from both her and an unknown man, the complaint said.

Later, at the request of Windsor police, U.S. investigators followed Bhogal to a bar and extracted a sample of his DNA from a glass he had been using. The sample matched the one recovered from Taggart’s body, the complaint alleged.

Bhogal, whose lawyer did not respond to request for comment, is being held in custody pending an extradition hearing. Documents indicate he’s due back in a U.S. court on Aug. 31.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Surrey United to celebrate 50 years of soccer at day-long event Saturday

Dunk tank, bouncy castles, food and more at Cloverdale Athletic Park

South Surrey boy, 10, to help kids in need

Ronin Bulmer is going door-to-door asking for donations

Vancouver, Delta police won’t use new saliva test to detect high drivers

The Dräger DrugTest 5000 is designed to find THC, the high-inducing part of marijuana

Proudly Surrey slate vows to build community centres every three kilometres around city

To do so, slate says it will engage in ‘ambitious lands swaps to recover value we create for developers by up-zoning property’

Findlay to be next CPC candidate for South Surrey-White Rock

Former cabinet minister lost 2017 election to Liberal Gordie Hogg

AFN national chief suggests moving Trans Mountain pipeline route

Perry Bellegarde said many Indigenous communities believe in the need to diversify export markets

Judge weighs Cosby’s sentence after declaring him ‘predator’

Montgomery County Judge Steven O’Neill made the decision as he weighed the punishment for Cosby

AFN national chief suggests moving Trans Mountain pipeline route

Perry Bellegarde said many Indigenous communities believe in the need to diversify export markets

U.S. worker charged after video shows him spitting on customer’s pizza

Jaylon Kerley of Detroit is charged with a felony count of food law violations

Andrew Weaver congratulates New Brunswick on electing first Green caucus

Election win means there are now three provincial Green Party caucuses in Canada

Around the BCHL: Merritt’s Matthew Kopperud nets Sun Devil scholarship

Around the BCHL is a look at the BCHL and goings-on throughout the junior A world.

Father, 9-year-old son killed in crash along B.C. highway

RCMP say family of five was hit head-on by a pickup truck north of Williams Lake

5 to start your day

Fraser Health buys two MRI clinics, South Surrey boy helps kids in need and more

Canada aiming for the moon, and beyond, with new space technology efforts

With an eye on future lunar exploration, Canada’s space agency is calling on companies to present their ideas for everything from moon-rover power systems to innovative mineral prospecting techniques.

Most Read