A man accused of murdering a Regina woman is now facing a second murder charge.
Clayton Bo Eichler, 32, appeared in Regina provincial court Friday charged with first-degree murder in the death of Richele Lee Bear, 23.
'Indignity' charge explained in court
Eichler has also been charged with offering an indignity to a human body in the case.
Court heard Friday the charge relates to allegations Eichler had sexual intercourse with Bear's body after she was dead.
Bear was last seen on Aug. 24, 2013.
Police said they conducted an extensive search, but her body was never found. Investigators believe she is dead.
"If we have any reason to search and concentrate our efforts in a particular location regardless of where it is, we will pursue that search," Regina Police Chief Troy Hagen said Friday.
Hagen added that, even without a body, investigators are confident with their findings.
"We've had a very complex, a very rigorous investigation ongoing with respect to [Bear's] disappearance and that has led to the criminal charges that we're announcing today," he said.
Eichler was previously charged with second-degree murder in the death of Kelly Nicole Goforth, 21.
Her body was found in the back alley of the 1700 block of McAra St., east of Regina's downtown, on the evening of Sept. 25, 2013.
Eichler was charged in her death on New Year's Eve.
Others missing or murdered, but no link to Eichler, chief says
Chief Hagen noted that if Eichler is convicted on both murder charges, he would fit the FBI definition of a serial killer. The FBI uses a "two or more" criteria.
The two cases are only the latest in a series of missing and slain aboriginal woman in Regina.
"We obviously don't have any evidence to suggest, at this time, that this individual is responsible for any more crimes," Hagen said. "However, time will tell. We're still obviously pursuing these investigations with diligence."
Hagen would not discuss any of the evidence investigators have gathered.
Eichler was originally charged with second-degree murder in the Goforth case, but the charge was upgraded Friday to first-degree murder.
Members of Goforth's family and Bear's family were at the courthouse Friday to observe the proceedings.
Eichler, who is remanded in custody, was wearing jail-issued orange coveralls as he sat in the prisoner's box while his case was dealt with today.
Relatives of the dead women hugged one another and appeared distraught, with one man covering his mouth with his hand, as the new charges were read.
"I don't have closure right now," Michele Bear, Richele's mother, said Friday following Hagen's news conference. "I think it's just the beginning. I think it's going to be a long, hard process for me and my family."
Richele was Bear's eldest daughter.
"Richele was very happy, a very good girl you know," her mother said. "She was a very happy part of the community, everybody knew her, she was loved and cherished and everyone loved her so much."