Accused B.C. killer has same name as slain teacher’s boyfriend: sources
The man accused of murdering a Burnaby, B.C. educational assistant shares the name as her boyfriend, sources have told CTV Vancouver.
Jan Poepl, 31, was charged with second-degree murder after being arrested by RCMP on Thursday. Nicole Hasselmann was found dead two weeks ago.
“[Integrated Homicide Investigation Team] recognizes that this is a very difficult time for Nicole’s family as they are grieving her death and we hope that we were able to provide them with some answers,” Cpl. Frank Jang said in a statement.
Sources tell CTV Vancouver that Hasselmann was in a relationship with a Burnaby resident who had the same name as the accused killer. In the past, her boyfriend had spent some time working as a realtor.
Investigators have said Hasselmann and her accused killer knew each other but would not confirm how or the extent of their relationship.
“IHIT detectives worked steadfastly to secure and compile the evidence for charge approval and today’s outcome would not have been possible without their tireless efforts,” Jang said.
There is no trial date set for Poepl as of Saturday.
Authorities have been mum on details in regards to Hasselmann's death.
On Nov. 16, first responders found the Vancouver School District special education assistant injured in a ditch after her SUV had crashed. It appeared her 2017 Kia Sorrento had slammed into a lamppost.
Hasselmann later died in hospital and police initially believed she had simply been ejected from her vehicle during the crash.
But later on, investigators said her wounds were "indicative of foul play." They have yet to reveal the official cause of her death.
An unresponsive man was also found in the SUV and was pulled out by first responders. Authorities expect him to make a full recovery.
The homicide team has not confirmed if the accused was that man in the vehicle or involved in the crash in any way.
In the wake of her death, Hasselmann’s friends and colleagues said they remember her as a great mother and a good friend.
Investigators with the RCMP is asking for anyone with information on the case to call the information line at 1-877-551-4448. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
With a report from CTV Vancouver's Emad Agahi