Barrie police have arrested Andrew Keene for the murder of Alexandra Flanagan, who went missing in the Barrie, Ontario, area in 2007. Keene, 29, is charged with first-degree murder and indignity to a dead body.
Flanagan, who was 33 at the time, went missing on July 8, 2007, and was last seen walking home with a friend that night. Friends and family became worried when she didn’t report to work the next morning.
Her disappearance sparked a massive search campaign organized over Facebook, including her friends and family in Barrie and Toronto. Flanagan had previously lived in Toronto’s Church-Wellesley Village and worked at the House of Lords hair salon at Yonge and Isabella.
Keene, now 29, had been an acquaintance of Flanagan’s. He was considered a person of interest in the case early on, and police searched his home for three days in October 2007. Police also searched the automotive plant where Keene worked in November 2008.
Flanagan’s remains were distributed kilometres apart in the Barrie area. Two sets of remains were found 1 kilometre apart from each other in Lackies Bush on Oct 4, 2007. Dental records later confirmed they belonged to Flanagan.
More remains were found on Feb 3, 2008, 8 kilometres away in the city’s east end. DNA testing confirmed that they, too, belonged to Flanagan.
On Oct 1, 2011, Flanagan’s mother published a letter in The Barrie Examiner pleading with the killer to reveal where the rest of her daughter’s remains could be found.
Three weeks later, on the morning of Oct 20, Barrie police arrested Keene at his workplace in Innisfil. Soon after, Barrie police announced they would be closing sections of Rose St, Bayfield St and access to Highway 400 to “conduct an evidence search.” Police said they had found all of Flanagan’s remains.
Later, Barrie police conducted an underwater search and recovery in Kempenfelt Bay for evidence. Police would not release results of their searches.
Keene has not been granted bail but is scheduled for a bail hearing on Nov 9.
Friends and family of Flanagan are planning a candlelight vigil near where the last of her remains were found, at Highway 400 and Bayfield St, on the path near the OPP station. The vigil is Saturday, Nov 12, 7-10pm. All are welcome to attend.