Marrisa Shen, 13, was killed in Burnaby’s Central Park in July 2017. (Police handout)

Man charged in ‘random’ death of 13-year-old Burnaby 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

Community efforts raise money for service dog to help Agassiz boy stay calm, happy

Riley, a two-year-old Lhasa Apso-Chihuahua cross has made a huge difference in Chase Frayn’s life

WATCH: Today, we remember: community members visit Agassiz cenotaph on Remembrance Day

Royal Canadian Legion members, veterans, first responders, residents gather to pay their respects

B.C. Legions in need of young members to continue aiding veterans into the future

Lest we forget what thousands of men and women did to fight for Canada’s freedoms – but without new membership, many Legion chapters face dwindling numbers

Agassiz Harrison school bus driver starts petition to get seatbelts on school buses

Petition come on the tail of Transport Canada announcement to investigate school bus data

VIDEO: Marvel Comics’ Stan Lee dies

Marvel co-creator was well-known for making cameo appearances in superhero movies

5 to start your day

One left dead after Abbotsford shooting, touching note left on Langley veteran’s windshield and more

Calgarians head to the polls to declare ‘yea’ or ‘nay’ on Winter Games

The question “are you for or are you against hosting the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games?” was to be posed to them Tuesday in a plebiscite to help determine whether the city should move ahead with a bid.

Heir’s big birthday: 70 candles lined up for Prince Charles

Prince Charles turns 70 Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2018, still serving in the heir to the throne role he has filled since he was a young child.

Trudeau lays down challenge to companies in bid to boost trade with Asia

“Building the relationships, building the connections, building the facility and also changing mindsets — getting Canadian companies to see the opportunities we have around the world to partner and invest.”

One person sent to hospital after incident at Langley gas station

Police observed retrieving what appeared to be an exacto knife

CNN sues Trump, demanding return of Acosta to White House

CNN is asking for an immediate restraining order to return Acosta to the White House.

Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

Official decision expected later Tuesday to end competition between North American cities to win bid and its promise of 50,000 jobs

US trial to tell epic tale of Mexican drug lord “El Chapo”

Guzman’s long-awaited U.S. trial begins Tuesday in New York

Most Read