Blake Dooley, a 53-year-old Ottawa man, has been charged with first-degree murder in the October shooting death of Christine MacNeil in Gatineau, Que.

MacNeil, 25, was shot and killed at the Four Points Sheraton Hotel on Rue Laurier on Oct. 19, 2015.

She was "targeted" and evidence shows the killing was planned, Gatineau police said at a news conference on Thursday morning.

Dooley appeared in court Thursday to face the charge and will remain in custody until his next appearance, scheduled for March 14. None of the allegations against Dooley have been proven in court.

Additional arrests may be made, police added.

Christine MacNeil homicide person of interest sketch Gatineau police 2015

Earlier this month, Gatineau police released this computer-generated sketch of a person of interest in the homicide. (Gatineau police)

Dooley has a lengthy criminal history, Ottawa court records show. He was convicted of assault with a weapon following an incident in Eganville, Ont., in June 1996, and was sentenced to one year of jail time, along with a lifetime weapons prohibition.

He was then convicted of aggravated assault, also in Eganville, in July 1996, and was sentenced to two years in prison.

More recently, Dooley was convicted of operating a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol level over .80 mg in Ottawa in June 2009. He was sentenced to pay a $1,100 fine and was prohibited from driving for one year.

Less than a year later he was convicted of impaired operation of a motor vehicle and driving while disqualified in the Township of McNab/Braeside, Ont. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail with 12 days of credit for pre-sentence custody, and was prohibited from driving for two years.

'Waiting a long time'

On Wednesday, when the arrest was first announced but the suspect's identity had not yet been released, MacNeil's father said it felt good to see progress in the case.

"I've been waiting a long time to hear something," John MacNeil told CBC News. "It's really been kind of like limbo."

He had previously described his daughter as a "happy-go-lucky young lady" who worked at a salon in Ottawa.

Earlier this month, Gatineau police released a computer-generated sketch of a person of interest in the case.

Gatineau police said Wednesday they also conducted searches at three Ottawa addresses as part of the case, on Mountshannon Drive, Woodroffe Avenue and Field Street.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Gatineau police at 819 243-4636, ext. 1.