UPDATED: Death of Serena Vermeersch – Arrest Made and Charges Secured
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) released the name of the man charged with second degree murder in connection to the homicide of Serena Vermeersch as 43-year-old Raymond Lee Caissie.
Inititally there was a publication ban on the release of suspect, but that has since been lifted said Staff Sergeant Jennifer Pound.
On the evening of September 15, 2014, 17-year-old Serena Vermeersch did not show up at home.
The next day a missing person investigation was opened and less than 24 hours later, the body of Vermeersch was located.
IHIT, in conjunction with the Surrey RCMP, arrested an adult male early Saturday morning (September 20) in Vancouver. This male is known to police and it is not believed that Serena and the accused knew each other.
“As I said last week, nothing angers me more than seeing innocent people become victims of crime,” said C/Supt. Bill Fordy, Surrey RCMP.
“As I stand here right now, Serena should be at Sullivan Heights Secondary School having a laugh with her classmates, and perhaps thinking about her graduation. Sadly, that is not the case.
“Her death and these types of crimes both galvanize and touch the entire community.”
The Vermeersch family also issued a statement.
“We are currently receiving the support we need from friends and
family in the face of Serena’s passing,” the Vermeersch family said in an issued statement.
“We appreciate the concern and kind words we are receiving, but we respectfully ask that our privacy remain undisturbed. If we wish to contact the media at some point in the future, we will initiate that contact. Until that point, we would like to be left to our grieving. Thank you.”
Police release name of man arrested after murder of Surrey teen
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) and the Surrey RCMP say more information will be released Monday during a joint news conference after a man, 43-year-old Raymond Lee Caissie, was arrested and charged in connection with the homicide of 17-year-old Serena Vermeersch.
IHIT requested the help of the public to locate a grey or silver Dodge three-quarter ton pickup truck seen leaving the area of the railroad tracks near where Vermeersch’s body was found.
Missing Surrey teen found murdered, police seek witnesses
A missing Surrey teen has been discovered murdered, and police are seeking witnesses, according to RCMP Staff Sgt. Jennifer Pound.
“On Sept. 16, (17-year-old)Serena Vermeersch was reported missing by her mother when she didn’t arrive home (the evening before),” Pound said.
“On Sept. 16 , the Surrey RCMP released a public advisory requesting the public’s assistance with locating Serena. Several hours later, Serena’ body was located by Search and Rescue in the 14600 block of 66th Avenue in Surrey. Surrey RCMP attended this location and at this point her death was deemed suspicious.
“Evidence retrieved by the Surrey RCMP to date supports the theory that Serena was murdered. The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team have now assumed conduct and are working closely with the Surrey RCMP to continue the evidence retrieval process.
“Serena was last seen on September 15th, just after 8 p.m., in the area of 64th Avenue and 128th Street getting on to a transit bus. We are looking to speak with anyone who may have seen her on this bus or when she got off the bus.
“We continue to ask for public assistance in locating a male that was witnessed departing the area in a pickup truck. The description of this vehicle is described as a grey/silver Dodge full size, ¾ ton with a canopy and roof rack. This vehicle departed West bound on 66th Avenue, U-turned at Uplands Road and departed eastbound on 66th towards 148 Street. The male, described as wearing dark clothing, was witnessed walking across the tracks North Bound and getting into his vehicle less than an hour prior to locating Serena’s body.
“The efforts by Surrey RCMP should be recognized and IHIT will continue to work with them in an integrated fashion. With the public’s assistance we will move forward with our intentions on locating the individual(s) responsible for Serena’s murder.
“Anyone with information is asked to contact the IHIT Tipline at 1-877-551-4448, or, to remain anonymous call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477.”