Man charged in ‘random’ death of 13-year-old B.C. girl

Marrisa Shen was found dead in Central Park in July 2017

A 28-year-old Syrian refugee has been charged with murder after the body of a 13-year-old Burnaby girl was found in a park last summer.

Ibrahim Ali, of Burnaby, is accused of first-degree murder in connection with the slaying of Marrisa Shen in Central Park on July 18, 2017.

Ali had moved to Canada just four months before Marrisa was killed, Integrated Homicide Investigation Team Supt. Donna Richardson said Monday.

IHIT Supt. Donna Richardson speaks with reporters after announcing charges in the “random” killing of Marrisa Shen in Burnaby. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)

“We still believe that this crime was a random act, meaning that Marrisa did not know the suspect,” said Richardson.

“As far as motive is concerned… I am not able to discuss those matters in order to protect our future judicial proceedings.”

IHIT Cpl. Frank Jang read out a statement from the Shen family, thanking police, the media and the public for their help in the 14 months since Marrisa’s death.

“We hope that justice will now be served and that Marrisa can finally be at peace in heaven,” Jang said.

READ MORE: Family thanks public 1 year after girl, 13, mysteriously killed in Burnaby park

READ MORE: One year later: Still no suspects in killing of 13-year-old B.C. girl

Police first became aware of Ali two weeks ago. He does not have a criminal record or evidence of mental illness and is currently a permanent resident.

He was arrested in Burnaby last Friday, after a massive investigation.

“More than 1,300 residents in the area surrounding Central Park were canvassed, over 600 interviews were conducted, over 2,000 persons of interest were identified and over 1,000 hours of video were collected from more than 60 locations,” Richardson said.

There is no evidence that religious ideology played any part in the killing, she said, adding she hoped the charge would not create backlash against the region’s refugees.

“I think by and large, our refugees who come to the country are hardworking citizens that are very happy to be in Canada,” she said.

“I would just hope that we look at this incident for what it is: a one-off situation.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Lightning causes three wildfires east of Osoyoos

It is believed the fires started by a lightning storm

UPDATE: Second collision on Highway 1 west of Salmon Arm now clear

Emergency crews respond to motor-vehicle collision near Second Nations Road intersection

CSRD to seek public assent to borrow $1.77 million for park purchase

Formal opposition from 10 per cent of electors required to halt loan

Air ambulance called to Highway 1 crash near Tappen

The collision happened about 3:30 p.m. by James Road

Food trucks feed festivalgoers’ want for unique dining experience

Roots and Blues returns with variety of vendors, continues with recycle and compost program

Video: Crowd thrilled at S-Games in Sicamous

The celebration of two-wheeled transportation showed off daring athletes on all kinds of bikes.

Lightning causes three wildfires east of Osoyoos

It is believed the fires started by a lightning storm

Backhoe ‘burned to a crisp’ in South Okanagan

South Okanagan fire chief said the situation could have been a lot worse

Our history in pictures: The Ireland residence

According Salmon Arm Museum records, this image was taken in front of… Continue reading

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Kelowna cab driver charged with sexual assault

RCMP received a report May 28 alleging a taxi passenger had been sexually assaulted by a cab driver

Letter: Make CSRD directors’ term limit subject to alternative approval process

Writer upset by regional district’s recent “money pit” proposals

Latest plan is to fly trapped fish by helicopter over Big Bar slide

Multi-pronged plan set in motion to freesalmon blocked by landslide in the Fraser River

Okanagan-based pop star Andrew Allen is back with a new band

Singer-songwriter Andrew Allen is bringing his new band home for a concert this Friday

Most Read