Kalen Schlatter, the 21-year-old man accused of killing Tess Richey, is now charged with first-degree murder.
The charges were upgraded from second-degree murder, but Toronto police have not explained the reason for the new charge.
Richey was found dead in Toronto’s gay village as a result of “neck compression” in the early morning of Nov 25, 2017, according to police, after she spent a night out at a nearby bar. Her body was found four days later in a stairwell in by her mother, who had driven from North Bay to look for her.
Schlatter, a west-end Toronto resident, was arrested on Feb 4, 2018. At the time, police said that they believed Schlatter and Richey met the night that Richey died.
“The opportunity presented itself,” Graham Gibson, a Toronto police detective sergeant, said when they announced the arrest.
Toronto police have not said if they still believe Schlatter and Richey met on the night she died.
Schlatter will make his next court appearance on March 22.