A poster hangs in a Vernon store window Oct. 7 advertising a bottle drive to fund shooting victim Dakota Samoleski’s funeral costs. (Morning Star)

A poster hangs in a Vernon store window Oct. 7 advertising a bottle drive to fund shooting victim Dakota Samoleski’s funeral costs. (Morning Star)

Bottle drive to fund funeral costs for Spallumcheen shooting victim

Vernon recycling centre collecting returns in memory of Dakota Samoleski

Bottles are being collected to cover the funeral costs of a man in his 20s who was shot to death in Spallumcheen last month.

Dakota Samoleski’s body was found in the 4500 block of Enderby Road by police after Vernon North Okanagan RCMP were called out to a possible shooting around 11:30 a.m. on Sept. 20.

Jevon Daniel Smith, 46, is charged with second-degree murder.

Bottles can be donated under Dakota’s name at Interior Recycling (4205 24th Ave.). An advertisement at a local gas station says the bottle drive started Oct. 5 and all proceeds will go to Fran, Samoleski’s mother, to cover the costs of a memorial and funeral.

It’s not known at this point who organized the bottle drive.

“All and any donations are graciously received and appreciated,” the flyer reads.

A Vernon-based GoFundMe fundraiser was started to cover funeral costs. Only $28 of the $7,000 goal has been raised through the fundraising platform.

Samoleski, whose matching Facebook profile indicates he was living in Penticton, has a history with the courts dating back to 2016 facing charges such as mischief, break and enter and assault of a peace officer.

“He had no one to fall on or to help him, except his uncle,” the campaign reads. “His uncle had hoped for him to better himself and get his life on track.”

The Morning Star decided not to link to the GoFundMe campaign due to unfounded allegations that have yet to be proven in court.

Smith, whose court records date back to 2003, will remain in custody as his matter has been put over until Oct. 25.

READ MORE: Fundraiser launched for victim of Spallumcheen shooting

READ MORE: Second-degree murder charge laid in Spallumcheen shooting


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