As Ashley Marie Simpson’s family approach the sixth holiday season since being reported missing in the spring of 2016, they finally have some answers as to what led to her sudden disappearance.
Her remains have been discovered near Salmon Arm.
Ashley was reported missing to the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP in April of 2016, after she had not been seen or heard from for several days. Ashley’s typical communication with family and friends had ceased unexpectedly and without explanation, leading loved ones and investigators to immediately suspect her disappearance may have been a result of something criminal.
On Friday December 3, 2021 the BC Prosecution Service approved one charge of second degree murder against 39 year-old Derek Favell, Ashley’s boyfriend at the time of her disappearance. “Early on, the Southeast District Major Crime Unit was called to take conduct of the investigation into Ashley’s disappearance. This team worked diligently for almost five years on the case, identifying Favell as a primary suspect,” states C/Supt. Elija Rain, who heads up the BC RCMP Major Crime Unit. “In October 2020, the BC Unsolved Homicide Unit (UHU) assessed the findings to date and assumed conduct of Ashley’s case.”
“We know nothing can bring Ashley back. Now, as we prepare to continue to support Ashley’s family through the court process, we hope that the announcement today will bring them some sense of peace,” states C/Supt. Rain
On December 4, 2021, Derek Favell appeared remotely before a JP and was remanded to appear remotely in Kamloops Provincial Court on Thursday December 9, 2021.