A man has been charged with first-degree murder in the killing of a Richmond resident, a Burnaby RCMP officer.
Charges were laid against Jongwon Ham, 37, in Vancouver Provincial court on Oct. 19 for killing Const. Shaelyn Yang.
Murder is automatically first degree when the victim is a police officer, under the Criminal Code of Canada.
Yang, 31, died after being stabbed at a “homeless camp” at Broadview Park, near Canada Way and Curle Avenue, shortly after 11 a.m. on Tuesday, according to Deputy Commissioner Dwayne McDonald, Commanding Officer of the BC RCMP in a media statement.
Emergency responders attended the scene and treated Yang, but she succumbed to her injuries.
The suspect was shot and injured and was sent the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, according to a BC RCMP media statement.
"This is an extremely difficult and tragic day for the BC RCMP and members of the Burnaby Detachment," said McDonald.
"Those (Yang) worked with before joining the RCMP and her police colleagues today, describe Cst. Yang as a kind and compassionate person, which makes her death even more difficult to accept."
BC RCMP officers described Yang as "kind and compassionate" and was a “loving wife, sister and daughter.”
Yang started her career volunteering with the Richmond RCMP's Victim Services unit and later become a full-time volunteer.
She decided to become a police officer and started training in June 2019. Yang graduated in December and was posted at the Burnaby Detachment.
Yang worked with Burnaby RCMP's mental health and homeless outreach team.
"I can also tell you that Const. Yang died bravely; she answered the call to duty and paid the ultimate price," said McDonald.
"The loss of Shaelyn will be felt by so many. Her death impacts her family, friends, the wider RCMP family, and the vulnerable community she so passionately served. Her loss is immeasurable."
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team is investigating Yang’s death. The incident is also being investigated by the Independent Investigations Office of BC.
-With files from Cornelia Naylor, Burnaby Now