People in Castor, Alta. say they are shocked that two men in their town have been charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of a local family last December.
Jason Klaus, 38, was charged with the first-degree murder in the deaths of his parents and sister. The same charges were laid against Joshua Frank, 29.
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The remains of Gordon Klaus, 61, and his daughter Monica Klaus, 40, were found in the rubble of a burnt-out house on Dec. 8, 2013. The body of Sandra Klaus, 62, was never found. Police said it was possible her remains were destroyed in the fire.
The fire and mystery surrounding the deaths left residents in the town wanting answers. Now that they have some, Klaus’s arrest is all they’ve been talking about.
Heide Andersen, the secretary of the Castor rodeo, said things were different at this year’s event, which took place over the weekend.
“In the beer gardens and in the stands, it was definitely something people were discussing,” Anderson said. “A bit of shock and awe, I guess.”
While the town was relatively quiet this weekend, Andersen said it wasn’t like that on Friday when the two accused were arrested.
“The main street was blocked off, an armoured vehicle, a helicopter and guys in suit,” she said, describing the scene. “It literally looked like a movie was being filmed downtown.”
Police have not confirmed whether the arrests were made downtown.
Kimberly Greene knew both of the accused, and is still shocked to hear about the charges laid against them.
"As soon as I heard it, it made me sick to my stomach. It's almost impossible to believe," she said.
“Never, ever did I ever think either would,” Greene added. “Especially Josh [Frank]. [He’s] the last person in the world I ever thought would be involved in something like that.”
Now that the arrests have been made, the people in Castor are just waiting to see what happens in court.
“Some kind of explanation, I think that’s what everybody’s waiting for,” Greene said.
“I imagine everyone’s going to want to find out the who, the what, the why kind of thing,” Andersen said.