Police have charged a 20-year-old Halifax man with first-degree murder in connection with the death of a 40-year-old cab driver last winter.
Chaze Lamar Thompson, who police say also goes by the name P.C., was formally charged Thursday morning, said RCMP spokesman Cpl. Joe Taplin.
Thompson has been incarcerated at the Central Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Burnside since February 2009 on unrelated charges, said Taplin, and is expected to remain there until his first appearance in Dartmouth Provincial Court Friday morning.
Sergei Kostin, a Blue Bell cab driver originally from Ukraine, was last seen picking up a fare at a variety store on Gaston Road in Dartmouth on Jan. 17, 2009. His burnt-out car was found at the end of Downey Road in North Preston three days later, but his remains were not discovered until April 1, when two officers came across a body lying about 20 feet from Upper Governor Road in North Preston. The remains were quickly identified as belonging to Kostin.
Members of the RCMP Integrated Major Crime Section canvassed the area in the weeks and months that followed, handing out pamphlets and speaking to dozens of people in an effort to identify potential witnesses. Officers also searched an area near the Howard W. Conrad Memorial Ball Field off Mount Edward Road, as well as four separate scenes in Cherrybrook, North Preston and Dartmouth.
“They put a lot of time and effort into this file,” Taplin said of the nearly 12-month search for answers in the case. “It was a very complex investigation.”
Kostin left behind a wife and two children in his homeland. Taplin said the family has been notified of the charge laid against Thompson.