The victim identified in a Burnaby mall stabbing last month was a graduate of a Port Coquitlam high school.
Melissa Blimkie died in hospital on Dec. 19, 2021, succumbing to stab wounds first responders found when they were called to a parkade near the Metropolis at Metrotown Walmart around 11:40 a.m.
She was 25 years old.
Blimkie attended Archbishop Carney Regional Secondary — a Catholic school in Port Coquitlam — starting in 2010 and graduated in 2014, according to her Facebook page, as well as mourning commenters on the social channel.
The North Vancouver resident began her studies at Simon Fraser University (SFU) later that fall.
In a statement, the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) says Everton Downey was charged with second-degree murder on Wednesday (Jan. 19).
The 31-year-old man was named the lead suspect in the case as he and Blimkie were in a relationship "for some time prior" to her murder, police said.
"This is an unimaginable loss for the friends and family of Melissa," said IHIT spokesperson Sgt. David Lee.
"We hope that this outcome provides them with some answers."
Downey, who was initially arrested near Metrotown by Metro Vancouver Transit Police the day of the incident, remains in police custody.
Lee adds investigators are still working on the case and are hoping to identify "associates" that can provide more details on Downey and Blimkie's relationship.