Witness refuses to testify against John Savage

Preliminary hearing on Stettler man for second-degree murder halted, plea bargain made

John Savage. Red Deer News and Area photo

A witness refused to testify against John Roland Douglas Savage during a preliminary hearing in Red Deer provincial court.

A preliminary hearing for Savage, 52, held in Red Deer starting on Jan. 14 and expected to run until Jan. 18, ended abruptly on Tuesday, Jan. 15 after Crown witness and federal penitentiary inmate Ernest Bedore refused on the stand to testify.

READ MORE: John Savage pleads guilty to manslaughter. Sentenced to 7 years for Stettler murder

Bedore was one of the three passengers with John Savage when Savage was arrested April 7, 2018, by Ponoka RCMP. After Bedore refused to testify the preliminary hearing was ended and the Crown and defence entered a joint submission to the court with Savage pleading guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter.

READ MORE: Trial set for John Savage for 2016 aggravated assault charges

The preliminary hearing was being held in Red Deer provincial court to determine if there was enough evidence against Savage for him to stand trial on second-degree murder charges. Savage was arrested and charged with the April 6, 2018, murder of James Hulkovich in Stettler.

Savage still faces charges of aggravated assault stemming from 2016. A trial is set for May 16-17, 2019, in Red Deer. \


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