Man charged in 1993 murder

Police have arrested and charged a man in Kelowna in connection with the 16-year-old cold case murder of a teenager.

Police have arrested and charged a man in Kelowna in connection with the 16-year-old cold case murder of a teenager.

Neil George Snelson, 43, made his first appearance in court yesterday, after being charged with the first-degree murder of Jennifer Cusworth, 19, who was killed in October 1993.

DNA evidence, which had been collected at the scene of the crime 16 years ago, led to Snelson’s arrest on Oct. 23.

“Today is the beginning of the end of a very long journey for Jean and Terry Cusworth,” said RCMP Const. Steve Holmes, of the victim’s parents.

He said Cusworth’s parents went to Kelowna every year on the anniversary of her death to make a plea for information leading to the arrest of her killer.

“Clearly, giving up was one thought that was never considered,” said Holmes.

Snelson, a father of four who has no prior criminal record, had been at a house party where Cusworth was last seen alive. Her body was found the following day in a ditch alongside a private road.

“It must be stated ... that the accused is considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law,” said Holmes.