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

Bus stop to take a trip down Lakeshore Drive in Salmon Arm

City crews working, creating odd tune at intersection of Lakeshore and Shuswap

Driver flees Chase RCMP, greeted by waiting officers in driveway near Salmon Arm

Police say man behind wheel without insurance and prohibited from driving in B.C.

Residents give peace a chance in Salmon Arm’s Marine Park

On International Day of Peace, public gathers at site dedicated to peace and understanding

Justice rules police did not coerce statement from Sagmoen

Defence had been seeking to have Curtis Sagmoen’s video interview with police deemed inadmissible

VIDEO: “How dare you?” Greta Thunberg addresses UN climate summit

‘We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and yet all you can talk about is money.’

Pettersson has 4 points as Canucks dump Ottawa 6-4

Vancouver wins NHL pre-season tilt in Abbotsford

Highway 97 closed after multi-vehicle collision near Kelowna

DriveBC estimates the highway won’t be reopened until tomorrow

British man returns to Yukon to tipple his own toe in long-running tradition

So-called sourtoe cocktail is a shot of whisky with a mummified human toe in it

Poll suggests Canadians concerned about fake news, but struggle to spot it

56 per cent of respondents admitted to reading or sharing inaccurate news

Province announces $3.5 million in funding for community solutions to overdose crisis

Grants up to $50,000 will be available for municipalities working with a regional health authority

Oilers McDavid, Draisaitl relish time in Okanagan

The Edmonton Oilers practiced at Prospera Place in Kelowan twice during team bonding trip

Conservatives’ plan to ease mortgage stress-test rules may raise debt and prices

Andrew Scheer vows to loosen rules around stress test and remove it altogether for mortgage renewals

B.C. mom urges patience after rude comments while out with toddlers

People asked to be better and to help each other

Most Read