Trial begins for man accused in 2015 homicide of ex-girlfriend
CTV News Edmonton
Published Monday, August 19, 2019 9:59AM MDT
Last Updated Tuesday, August 20, 2019 10:17AM MDT
Warning: this story contains graphic details of brutal violence
The trial for Silva Koshwal, the man charged with brutally murdering his ex-girlfriend at a downtown apartment in August of 2015, began on Monday.
Koshwal is charged with second degree murder and offering an indignity to a body in connection with the death of Nadine Skow.
Investigators say Skow, 38, died after sustaining more than 100 stab wounds inside an apartment at 106 Avenue and 104 Street.
'He's going to kill me'
Today, court heard how Skow and Koshwal had been a couple but broke up in October of 2014. By late August of 2015, Skow had bought a new home she had planned to move in to before month's end.
According to the agreed statement of facts, at around 1 a.m. on Aug. 24, 2015, a man broke into an apartment in Skow’s building. A woman inside used an umbrella to beat him back out of that suite, then did not call police.
The statment of facts goes on to describe how neighbours reported hearing screams and moaning down the hall two hours later with one neighbour hearing someone scream "he's going to kill me, help me", but did not call police.
The next day, co-workers visited and found the suite's door closed but not locked. According to the statement of facts, they found a gruesome scene: Skow's mutilated body was face-down on the floor with organs removed and her heart pinned to the wall with a butcher knife.
Police later estimated she was stabbed 101 times with wounds to the head, neck, chest, abdomen, groin, thigh and buttocks.
Koshwal turned himself into police at around 6 p.m.
After hearing the facts and forensic evidence, Justice Sterling Sanderman told the courtroom he had no doubt Koshwal killed Skow.
"One would come to no other conclusion, that he is the perpetrator," Sanderman said of Koshwal.
The defence is arguing that Koshwal was not criminally responsible, having endured trauma while growing up in Sudan during a period of civil war and genocide.
"He's seen every type of carnage one should never have to see," psychologist Leslie Block said in court, adding he believes Koshwal regularly disassociates from himself.
In 2015, Staff Sgt. Bill Clark described the crime scene as "probably one of the most horrific I've seen in my career as a police officer."
The Canadian Border Services Agency confirmed Silva Koshwal, 38, was under a removal order due to a 2010 sexual assault conviction.
However, the order was stayed by the Immigration and Refugee Board until January 2016.
With files from Jeremy Thompson