The suspect in the murder last year of a European tourist has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.
This past Monday, Sean McKenzie, 27, entered a guilty plea in B.C. Supreme Court in Chilliwack.
On Aug. 22, 2018, the body of 28-year-old Belgian tourist Amelie Sakkalis was found near Highway 1 north of Boston Bar, about 2.5 hours southwest of Kamloops.
Her death was deemed a homicide.
Less than a month after the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team took conduct of the investigation, Oliver resident McKenzie was arrested and charged in connection with the death.
He will be sentenced on Nov. 19.
“Amelie’s murder was a shock to the community and even for our seasoned investigators,” IHIT’s Sgt. Frank Jang said. “A guilty plea speaks to the hard work and dedication of our investigators, as well it is important to acknowledge the support from our policing partners and the partnership with crown counsel.”
Sakkalis was killed by McKenzie while on a hitchhiking trip from Penticton to Vancouver on Aug. 22, 2018.
The day before she died, Sakkalis posted to a page on Facebook called Le Guide de Croutard, looking for a ride to Vancouver. The next day — her last — she posted again, looking for a place to stay in the city because the hostels were full.
Police say Sakkalis met McKenzie that same day.
McKenzie was arrested on Sept. 14, 2018. He does not have a previous criminal record, but did travel extensively throughout B.C. for work. IHIT has not said if McKenzie is linked to other unsolved murders.
— with files from the Vancouver Sun