Lawyer: Man charged in couple's deaths has lived quiet life

[Original Post] FILE – In this April 11, 2018, file photo, Snohomish County Cold Case Detective Jim Scharf, right, shares details of the unsolved case of the 1987 double homicide of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg, during a press conference in Everett, Wash. William Earl Talbott II charged in the slayings of the young […]

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[Original Post]

The Latest on the trial of William Earl Talbott II, who is charged with killing a young Canadian couple in 1987 (all times local):

11:10 a.m.

A defense lawyer for a man charged with killing a young Canadian couple in 1987, described his client as a blue-collar guy who’s lived “a quiet, unremarkable life.”

In his opening statement Friday at William Earl Talbott II’s trial, attorney Jon Scott noted there’s little or no evidence about who 18-year-old Tanya Van Cuylenborg and her boyfriend, 20-year-old Jay Cook, were with or what they did in the days before they were found dead in Washington state.

Talbott was arrested last year after authorities used a novel method called genetic genealogy to identify him as the person they say left his DNA on Van Cuylenborg’s pants.

Scott’s opening statement did not offer any theory about how the DNA wound up there.

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10:30 a.m.

Jurors in Washington state are hearing about the mysterious final days of a young Canadian couple found slain in 1987 — as well as the novel method authorities used to make an arrest three decades later.

William Earl Talbott II wasn’t arrested until last year, when authorities said they used genetic genealogy to identify him as the person who left his DNA on one of the victims.

Opening statements began Friday with a prosecutor describing how 18-year-old Tanya Van Cuylenborg and her boyfriend, 20-year-old Jay Cook, left Victoria, British Columbia, for an overnight trip to Seattle.

When they didn’t return, their families began a frantic search for them, including renting a plane to try to spot their copper-colored van. Their bodies were found in separate locations about a week later.

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