Man charged with Nanaimo teen's murder makes first court appearance
VANCOUVER -- The man charged with first-degree murder in the 2017 death of Nanaimo teen Makayla Chang made his first court appearance in the case Friday.
Steven Bacon appeared in the Nanaimo courtroom via video from the jail in Thunder Bay, Ont., where he is being held on four unrelated charges, including sexual assault and incest.
Inside the courtroom, Makayla Chang's father, mother and grandmother all watched and listened as lawyers and a judge discussed the case.
"It kind of made my skin crawl just to see him," said Kerry Chang, Makayla's father, after Friday's hearing.
"We are just happy to see that it’s finally moving along," he added. "Three and a half years is a long time to be waiting for this to take hold."
Bacon has been accused of befriending the much-younger Makayla and her social group. Her father believes Makayla stayed at Bacon's house on occasion.
The court ordered Bacon to be confined to the Thunder Bay District Jail until further notice. It also ordered him to be placed under the jurisdiction of the province of British Columbia while he's in custody there.
"It ensures that he isn’t going to be released at the facility where he is being held in Ontario until he comes to B.C. to deal with his charge here," explained Crown counsel Nick Barber.
Bacon's next scheduled court appearance is Oct. 19 at 9:30 a.m. and will also be conducted via video.
Bacon was 57 at the time of Chang's death. He was arrested in Saint John, N.B., on Sept. 27, 2019 for the unrelated charges, and was later transferred to the Thunder Bay facility.
Earlier this month, Nanaimo RCMP announced that a charge of first-degree murder had been sworn against Bacon, more than three years after Chang’s death.
Bacon is expected to face the charges in person in B.C. in the future, but no date for his return to the province has been scheduled.
"As soon as anything substantial has to happen, he’ll be brought here," Barber said.
With files from CTV News Vancouver Island's Alanna Kelly