Police search for murder weapon in south-Ottawa
Jessica Riopelle, 23, is seen in this undated photo posted on Facebook.
Police are searching for a murder weapon in south-Ottawa in connection with the city's fourth homicide of the year.
Jessica Riopelle, 23, was found dead in a south-end hotel room on Saturday night.
The Saadé International Inn is attached to Diamonds Cabaret strip club, where Riopelle worked as an exotic dancer.
Patrick Dunac, 34, made a brief court appearance on Monday to face second-degree murder charges in connection with her death. He will be back in court on Wednesday.
While Ottawa police say the accused was known to the victim, investigators won't elaborate on the extent of their relationship.
"They at least knew each other previously. The true nature of their relationship, I can't say," said Staff-Sgt. Randy Whisker.
Reports say Riopelle had recently stopped dancing when she was banned from the club after a disagreement with the owner. She was apparently welcomed back and Saturday was her first shift.
Riopelle was remembered by friends Monday as a loving and compassionate woman who was always willing to offer help to friends in need.
Police were still on the scene Monday canvassing the area for a murder weapon, which they refused to identify.
In a bizarre coincidence, Riopelle's childhood friend, Scott Ledoux, was murdered at a party in Orleans on St. Patrick's Day. Riopelle attended his funeral, and now friends will attend hers.
Anyone with information about the homicide is asked to contact investigators at 613-236-1222, ext. 5423, or Crime Stoppers at 613-233-8477 (TIPS).
With a report from CTV Ottawa's Catherine Lathem