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Canadian man arrested after death of Dawson Creek, B.C., woman at Mexican resort

A Canadian man is being held in connection with the death of a Dawson Creek, B.C., woman at a resort south of Cancun.

Mexican prosecutors said the woman was found dead Friday at a hotel, but did not name the man or the hotel. The victim’s family later confirmed that she was Kiara Agnew, 23, of Dawson Creek in northeast B.C.

CBC News has reached out to police forces to confirm the suspect’s identity.

Prosecutors said the death occurred in the Mayan Riviera, the stretch of coast south of Cancun. Local media said it happened at a hotel in the resort town of Playa del Carmen.

A blonde woman leans against a car while standing next to a river during a sunset.
Agnew’s aunt Katlyn Levesque says her niece had always loved to travel and made her mother get her a passport so they could travel together. (Submitted by Katlyn Levesque)

“I didn’t want it to be true — I still don’t want it to be true,” Agnew’s aunt Katlyn Levesque told CBC News. “It’s being tried as a potential femicide.”

It is unclear if the man has a lawyer. A tweet from a Mexican police force stated that a foreign national is being investigated for the crime of femicide, in a community within the Mayan Riviera.

Global Affairs Canada said in a statement they are aware of the death of a Canadian citizen, as well as the detention of another Canadian in Mexico.

“Consular officials are providing consular assistance to the families and are in contact with local authorities,” said spokesperson Marilyne Guèvremont. “Due to privacy considerations, no further information can be disclosed.”

A blonde white woman poses for a selfie.
Agnew, 23, was born in New Brunswick but moved to Dawson Creek when she was a teenager. (Submitted by Katlyn Levesque)

According to Agnew’s aunt Katlyn Levesque, the 23-year-old grew up in the New Brunswick village of Plaster Rock and moved to Dawson Creek when she was a teenager. She was in Mexico with her boyfriend at the time of her death.

Agnew worked at the Lake View Credit Union, which has an office in Dawson Creek.

“All at Lake View Credit Union are mourning the loss of our teammate and friend, Kiara Agnew,” a Facebook post from the credit union read. “We send our love and faith to all others who have been impacted.”

Agnew was an animal lover

A fundraiser run by Agnew’s family to bring her body back to Canada has raised over $17,000 as of 1 p.m. PT Sunday. According to Agnew’s aunt, the couple was in Mexico for a birthday celebration.

“Kiara loved to travel, she has wanted to travel since she’s been little,” Levesque said. “She was really excited about [the trip] … she had a heart of gold. She was vibrant, courageous, driven.”

Levesque says the family is still waiting for autopsy results to confirm the cause of Agnew’s death. She last spoke to her niece — who was set to turn 24 on March 11 — on Thursday.

A white woman with braided brown hair smiles while seated in a car.
A fundraiser has been started by a family member of Agnew to bring her body back to Canada. (Submitted by Katlyn Levesque)

“She was an animal lover,” Agnew’s aunt recalled. “She’s the kind of girl that would stop on the side of the road and need to rescue whatever animal’s there — a bird, a cat, a baby raccoon, it wouldn’t matter.”

Levesque, who says she was very close to her niece, called her death “beyond tragic for every single person involved.”

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