The house at the centre of the Makayla Chang murder investigation is now a Dollarama but the devastation for the Nanaimo teen’s family — and their quest for answers — hasn’t changed in the last three years.
“Living through it is an experience that I wouldn’t want to wish on anybody,” Makayla’s dad Kerry Chang says. “It’s the absolute worst thing that could happen, it really is.”
“Absolutely everything,” Makayla’s mom, Janine Vautour, says sobbing when asked what she misses most about her daughter. “She was really really smart and funny.”
Sixteen-year-old Makayla loved to sing and when she went missing in March of 2017, hundreds of people came out to search for her.
Tragically, her body was found two months later.
“I feel so much sympathy for her family,” a Nanaimo resident told CHEK News at the time. “It’s sad.”
Steven Bacon, now 59, was named a person of interest in the case.
RCMP questioned him and searched his home twice, before Makayla’s body was found.
Makayla’s family says he’d formed an unhealthy relationship with the teen.
Then last August, RCMP issued a Canada-wide warrant for Bacon saying he might have information about the murder.
“At this point, we have no idea where in Canada he may be but we are continuing with the investigation and we’re at the point we need to speak with him again,” Cst. Gary O’Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP told reporters in August of 2019.
Bacon was arrested in January in Thunder Bay, Ontario, on four unrelated charges including sexual assault, sexual exploitation and incest dating back more than 15 years.
RCMP say the “extensive” police investigation into Makayla’s murder is now complete.
The files are with Crown counsel, to make a decision on charges.
But a homicide case like this can have more than a million pieces of electronic communication so it can take time to review.
“We’re pleased that we’re moving forward now,” Kerry Chang says. “It’s been a long haul for us. It’s over three years now and we need justice for Makayla to rest in peace.”