Surrey murder victim Serena Vermeersch, 17 (Facebook image)

Raymond Lee Caissie gets life in prison for murdering Surrey teen in 2014

Judge numbers Caissie among ‘violent merciless men without a conscience’

SURREY — Raymond Lee Caissie was sentenced to life in prison with no eligibility to apply for parole for 17 years Friday morning in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster, for the 2014 murder of Surrey teenager Serena Vermeersch.

Caissie, 46, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. He stood in the prisoner’s box, dressed in red prison garb, and took the news quietly as Justice Gregory Bowden numbered him among “violent, merciless men without a conscience.”

Bowden noted Caissie’s defence lawyer Troy Anderson conceded his client will probably never be released from prison.

“He has never been a productive member of society,” the judge said of the killer. “He has been unmanageable in the community since a very young age and has spent the great majority of his life in custody for serious offences. Since becoming an adult, he has only spent one year and three months out of custody and in the community with the dire consequences that I have described.”

After the sentencing, Caissie swaggered out to the courtoom, escorted by a sheriff.

Vermeersch’s family declined to comment.

A Surrey Search and Rescue team found the 17-year-old girl’s body on Sept. 16, 2014, near railway tracks in the 14600-block of 66th Avenue in Sullivan.

Caissie, 43 at the time, was arrested the following week in Vancouver and charged with second-degree murder. He has spent most of his life behind bars for sexual assault with a weapon, forcible confinement, robbery, theft, and other crimes.

See more: Crown, defence seek 17 years no parole in Surrey teen’s murder

The Crown and defence made a joint submission for Raymond Lee Caissie to not be eligible to apply for parole for 17 years, as he serves his mandatory life sentence.

The court heard Caissie, now 46, choked Vermeersch until she was unconscious after riding on the same bus with her.

When she exited the bus, he got off too and followed her for four blocks. She then turned down a dark path she used as a short cut home.

When he caught up to her on the path, he marched Vermeersch 580 feet to a secluded area at the edge of a cedar mill, where the teenage girl pulled an X-acto knife out of her purse and slashed Caissie’s neck, leaving a wound that required 22 stitches.

“Serena was a very brave young woman and tried to defend herself,” Bowden noted.

Crown prosecutor Colleen Stewart said Caissie then choked the teen unconscious and decided to kill her to silence her, given his lengthy criminal record dating back to the 1980s.

“His background is abysmal,” she said. “He has repeatedly terrorized women.”

Stewart read victim impact statements from Vermeersch’s family and friends. “Why didn’t I pick her up at the bus stop?” her mom’s statement read. “I regret it over and over. I failed her.”

Asked if Caissie has expressed remorse for killing Vermeersch, Anderson told reporters “I don’t discuss my conversations with my clients.”



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Tom on Twitter

 

Raymond Lee Caissie is serving a life sentence for murdering Surrey teenage Serena Vermeersch, in 2014. (Photo: Surrey RCMP).

Just Posted

Suspicious blaze guts car in Langley City

RCMP are investigating and looking for a suspect vehicle.

Wall maintenance interrupts run of Langley spinners’ exhibit

A local weavers guild has some of its members’ work on display at the Township civic facility.

Langley footballers come together for Super Bowl blast

Langley Rams are holding a viewing party fundraiser at Ocean Park in Brookswood on Feb. 4.

WIN: Milner actor taps into inner jokester for Langley Players comedy

The curtain goes up on The Foreigners next Thursday at the Langley Playhouse.

Centenarian and then some: Dorscie Paterson set to turn 105

Longtime Langley resident continues to advocate passionately for hospice care in community

B.C. cougar kitten rescued after mother struck by vehicle

Conservation Officers find home for young kitten found dehydrated and frostbitten near Williams Lake

Input sought for major road works for Maple Ridge

Consultation on Haney Bypass upgrades

Pitt councillors don’t support CP Rail underpass

Gateway projects will need city support says MP Ruimy

Suspected Toronto serial killer targeting gay community arrested

A 66-year-old man is charged with first-degree murder in disappearance of two Toronto men

Carpet bowlers have been excluded from BC 55+ Games and Canada 55+ Games

Gold medal carpet bowling winners not able to defend their titles in 2018

No crackdown, just education as BC Ferries’ enacts smoking ban

Fines and extra patrols not happening at this time as ban begins Monday

UPDATE: Police release new footage, launch website in hunt for 13-year-old’s killer

IHIT say no one has been arrested or charged in connection with Marrisa Shen’s death

Rural B.C. students score visit with Canadiens netminder Carey Price

Two students from the Chilcotin can hardly wait to meet hometown hero Carey Price in Montreal.

VIDEO: Elk parade on Vancouver Island is awesome sight

They’re out in force for a morning stroll. Check out some of Youbou’s famous elk.

Most Read