Jurors view videos of rural area where Jessica Newman's body dumped

Jessica Newman's body was discovered with 75 stab wounds in a rural ditch two months after she disappeared. Newman's on-again, off-again boyfriend Kevin Rubletz, 33, is on trial for second-degree murder.

Kevin Rubletz is on trial for 2nd-degree murder of his former girlfriend and the mother of his child

Kevin Rubletz is accused of killing his former girlfriend, Jessica Newman, 24, and dumping the body near a rural intersection northeast of Balzac. (CBC/Facebook)

Jessica Newman's purse contents rattle off like those belonging to any 24-year-old woman: makeup, a hair elastic, teeth whitening strips and a concert ticket for Emerson Drive, a band that had played in Calgary in March 2015.

But the purse was bloodied and it was found two months after Newman disappeared. It was discovered in a rural ditch near her petite body, which had 75 stab wounds.

Newman's on-again, off-again boyfriend Kevin Rubletz, 33, is on trial for second-degree murder. 

Jurors have now viewed two videos showing the rural area near Balzac where Newman's body was dumped. The prosecution team of Shane Parker and Tom Spark say the evidence will show Rubletz killed Newman in his van in a "spontaneous but intentional" act of violence and then dumped her body.

In one video, at the intersection of Range Road 284 and Township Road 264, Newman's body can be seen in the ditch.

A still image from the Calgary police helicopter shows a white tarp over Jessica Newman's body, which was discovered near Balzac in May 2015. (Court exhibit)

Newman and Rubletz shared a son together. She disappeared on March 10, 2015, one day before the two parents were due in family court where Newman was seeking 50 per cent custody. 

The pair were exchanging text messages of love and romance in the days before her disappearance, the prosecution told jurors.

On Wednesday, Const. Paul McKenzie told jurors about data from Newman's electronic devices to provide a timeline of when they had last been used. Although the activity halted almost entirely on March 10, 2015, two files on Newman's laptop were accessed three days later including a file titled "women's shelter phone numbers."

After her body was discovered by a road crew worker, Rubletz told police he picked up Newman from work on the night of March 10, took her for a coffee and dropped her at home.

But prosecutors believe Rubletz killed her in his van. Newman's DNA was found inside and there was evidence a "bloodletting event" took place. 

Days after the accused gave his first statement to police, he made a "significant addition to his story," said Parker. Rubletz told police he drove out to Balzac after dropping Newman at her home.

Rubletz 'nonchalant' about her disappearance

The Crown's theory is that Newman was sitting in the front seat of Rubletz's van when she was killed. Newman was found with the same clothing she wore to work the night she disappeared.

On the day the former couple was due in court, Rubletz showed up; Newman, who was excited about the prospect of getting more time with her son, did not.

Newman's former roommate told jurors he became concerned after he hadn't seen her for three days. 

During a phone call with Rubletz, Michael Hahn said the accused was "nonchalant, not really worried" about the fact nobody could get a hold of Newman.

The three-week jury trial is being presided over by Court of Queen's Bench Justice Glen Poelman. Rubletz is represented by defence lawyers Brendan Miller and Joshua Sutherland.

On Thursday, jurors will hear evidence about text messages between Newman and Rubletz in the months, weeks and days leading up to her disappearance.


Meghan Grant

CBC Calgary crime reporter

Meghan Grant is a justice affairs reporter. She has been covering courts, crime and stories of police accountability in southern Alberta for more than a decade. Send Meghan a story tip at or follow her on Twitter.