Woman killed in Naramata was hard-working single mom, friend says

Woman killed in Naramata was hard-working single mom, friend says

RCMP visited Kathy Richardson’s house in Naramata on June 9 in connection with last month’s double murder of Kamloops’s Fryer brothers.

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Friends of hairstylist Kathy Richardson are mourning her slaying after police confirmed they found her body inside her Okanagan home Wednesday.

The RCMP said officers visited Richardson’s house, in the 3900-block of 3rd Street in Naramata, just before 5 p.m. on June 9 in connection with last month’s double murder of Kamloops brothers Erick Fryer, 29, and his elder brother, Carlos, 31.

The siblings were found dead in a remote area near Naramata on May 10.

Staff Sgt. Janelle Shoihet said in a news release that Richardson’s home was “insecure” when police arrived this week, so they entered “to ensure the well-being of the occupants.”

“Once inside, the body of an adult woman was discovered. Her death is being investigated as a homicide,” she said.

RCMP Supt. Sanjaya Wijayakoon said the investigation into the Fryer brothers’ murders “is progressing and we know that their deaths were not a random act and likely connected to local drug and gang activities.”

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RCMP spokeswoman Dawn Roberts said Friday that police want to speak to anyone who had dealings with Kathleen in the days before her death. Understanding her movements or activities will help continue to move this investigation forward.

Land title records show Richardson bought her house in 2000. She both lived and operated her hair salon on the property.

One friend told Postmedia News on Friday that it was “a real shocker” to learn the hard-working single mom had been murdered. And he said there is no way Richardson had anything to do with drugs or gangs and is frustrated that police have left that public impression.

“She’s a single mom, a hairdresser. I think she did everybody’s hair in Naramata,” said the longtime friend who asked not to be identified.

He said that Richardson had been worried about her son who had been in trouble on-and-off in recent years.

“I know he’s had his problems over the years, but he seemed to always right himself,” the friend said. “Kathy has just been losing her mind stressed out.”

She was also fearful after a connection was made between her home and the double murder, the friend said, and told people that her son had nothing to do with what happened to the brothers.

RCMP are seeking the public’s assistance in their continuing investigation into the discovery of a deceased woman in Naramata on Wednesday. The deceased has now been identified as 57-year-old Kathy Richardson of Naramata.
RCMP are seeking the public’s assistance in their continuing investigation into the discovery of a deceased woman in Naramata on Wednesday. The deceased has now been identified as 57-year-old Kathy Richardson of Naramata. Photo by BC RCMP /PNG

On a recent trip to the Lower Mainland to get her son, she thought she was being followed, he said.

“She was scared out of her mind,” the friend said.

Richardson’s son is identified on her Facebook page as Wade Cudmore.

The provincial court database shows Cudmore, born in 1988, had a warrant issued for his arrest June 10 on outstanding charges of dangerous operation of a vehicle and flight from police, as well as charges of breaching court-ordered conditions.

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Cudmore was then arrested and appeared in Kelowna provincial court Thursday, the database shows. He’s scheduled to appear again in a Penticton courtroom June 14.

Cudmore has a 2020 conviction for theft under $5,000 for which he was fined. And he was convicted in 2009 for resisting arrest and dangerous operation of a vehicle.

In 2013, he was convicted of possession for the purpose of trafficking.

Other friends and customers of Richardson’s expressed grief on social media over the loss of the popular community member, who regularly posted inspirational messages on her Facebook page. She also linked to posts about searches for missing people and pets, and frequently offered praise for first-responders.

One woman said “it seems the news is not good” about her husband’s hairdresser.

“We are both heartbroken,” she wrote.

Another friend wrote: “We will all miss Kathy’s gentle soul and kind-spirited love for everyone.”

Anyone who has any information about Richardson’s death, or the murders of the Fryer brothers, is asked to contact the RCMP Southeast District Major Crime Unit tip line at 1-877-987-8477.

kbolan@postmedia.com

twitter.com/kbolan

Blog: vancouversun.com/tag/real-scoop/

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