Armstrong murder trial begins

Family and friends of an Armstrong teen who was beaten to death on Halloween 2011 are finally getting their day in court.

Family and friends of an Armstrong teen who was beaten to death on Halloween 2011 are finally getting their day in court.

Matthew Foerster, 28, is charged with the first degree murder of Taylor Van Diest, and Monday marked the first day of a trial expected to stretch well into next month. For the next two weeks a judge alone will hear evidence, then a jury will be selected.

Testimony in open court isn’t expected to be heard until March 24, said Crown Counsel Iain Currie, late last month.

It will be a long process, but one the family will attend in its  entirety with the hope it will bring some “closure,” said Van Diest’s uncle Paul Albert, Monday.

Van Diest was 18-years-old on Halloween 2011, and expected at a party. When she didn’t show up friends searched for her and found her beaten on a stretch of train tracks near her home. She died in hospital not long after.

Foerster  was arrested five months later and ultimately charged with first degree murder.

He has changed lawyers multiple times, setting the trial date back each time.

In the dark area Van Diest was found beaten, her family has brought some light.

Her memorial trail is a 170-metre length of trail based on the existing conceptual Armstrong Spirit Trail Plan, a 1.3-kilometre trail through the city located within or adjacent to the railway right-of-way.

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