Trial dates have been set in two high-profile Surrey murder cases – but those wanting resolution to either case still have at least a year to wait.
Proceedings against South Surrey mother Lisa Batstone – charged with killing her eight-year-old daughter in December 2014 – have been scheduled for June 5-30 of next year in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster.
Later that year, Raymond Caissie – charged with killing 17-year-old Serena Vermeersch in September 2014 – is to be tried, beginning Nov. 6, 2017. Those proceedings are scheduled to continue until Dec. 8.
Both trials were set earlier this month, during a June 9 appearance at the New Westminster courthouse, and won’t get underway until more than two years after the crimes were committed.
Batstone was arrested Dec. 10, 2014 and charged with second-degree murder following the discovery of the body of her daughter Teagan, a Grade 3 student at Rosemary Heights Elementary, in the back of a car in cul-de-sac just south of Crescent Road.
In January 2015, she was found fit to stand trial.
Caissie was ordered last February to stand trial, following a preliminary inquiry. His arrest in connection with Vermeersch’s death – her body was discovered near 146 Street and 66 Avenue in Surrey a day after she was reported missing – sparked outrage, as he had been released from prison in 2013 after serving a 22-year sentence for a violent sexual assault and robbery in Abbotsford in 1991.
At the time of Caissie’s release, the B.C. Corrections Branch issued a warning to the public that he planned to live in Surrey and was considered at high risk to re-offend.