April 18, 2019 11:27 am
Updated: April 18, 2019 5:27 pm

Dartmouth man charged in 2018 homicide of Karen Lee MacKenzie, remains still not found

Owen Patrick Nelson has been charged with second-degree murder.


Halifax police have charged a man in connection with the 2018 homicide of Karen Lee MacKenzie, whose remains have not been found.

Owen Patrick Nelson, 43, was arrested early Wednesday morning in Cole Harbour and charged with second-degree murder and interfering with human remains.

READ MORE: Man charged in Karen MacKenzie’s disappearance attempted to mislead police — documents

Nelson was previously charged with interfering with human remains, assault and two counts of breach of probation in relation to MacKenzie’s disappearance.

Police would not elaborate on what led to the new charges.

“The evidence that we have collected over the last year has — we’re confident that the right charges were laid today based on what’s been collected,” said Halifax Regional Police Supt. Jim Perrin.

MacKenzie was reported missing on March 3, 2018. She had not been seen or heard from since Feb. 25, 2018.

Karen Lee MacKenzie was reported missing on March 3, 2018.

Provided/Halifax Regional Police

On March 13, 2018, Nelson was first arrested in the Highfield Park Drive area of Dartmouth. Court documents obtained by Global News at the time showed Halifax Regional Police believed that Nelson had assaulted MacKenzie at the time she was last seen alive. They also believed he misled police by reporting her missing.

WATCH (March 15, 2018): Man charged in connection with disappearance of Karen MacKenzie appears in court

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At the time, police said her body had not been found, but investigators believed the 40-year-old woman was dead.

On Thursday, Perrin confirmed MacKenzie’s remains have still not been found.

“We were involved in a couple of significant searches last March. A lot of police resources tied up for a significant amount of time.,” he said.

“Unfortunately we didn’t recover Ms. MacKenzie’s remains during those searches and we’re hopeful that we will get some information that leads us to where her remains are.”

Perrin says searches took place in Halifax Regional Municipality, Hants County and Lunenburg County.

Nelson appeared in Dartmouth Provincial Court on Thursday.

The defence said they received new disclosure in regards to the new charges and needed time to review. He has been remanded and will return to court on May 10.

Police are asking anyone with information about the case to call them at 902-490-5016 or submit a tip to Crime Stoppers.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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