Charges laid in the fatal Ladner crash that claimed teenager

Incident occurred last June on Highway 17A

Charges have been laid against a Burnaby man in connection to a crash that killed a young New Westminster woman last June on Highway 17A in Ladner.

Last Friday, Surrey Crown Counsel approved criminal charges following the arrest of 44-year-old Chao Chen, the driver allegedly responsible for killing 19-year-old Olivia Malcom.

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Chen has been charged with impaired driving causing death and impaired driving over 80 (milligrams of alcohol) causing death in relation to the crash.

Chen was taken into custody and subsequently brought before a Justice of the Peace whereupon he was released on a number of conditions including: must not occupy the driver’s seat of any motor vehicle; not to be found in public in a state of intoxication; must surrender all passports and travel documents or authorizations; and must remain in the Province of British Columbia.

Chen’s next scheduled court appearance is set for Sept. 24 in Surrey Provincial Court.

“Olivia was taken from us without warning,” said Olivia’s mother, Bridget Malcom. “Our next steps are to ensure that our family gets justice for Olivia and that the driver is held accountable for his actions.”

Malcom and her 20-year-old friend were standing behind their vehicle which was parked off the shoulder of Highway 17A in Delta last June when they were hit from behind by a Jeep. Malcom died at the scene.

She was remembered as a prominent member of the local lacrosse community and an online funding campaign in the months after her death raised more than $100,000 for a bursary to support post-secondary education.

A memorial bench in honour of Malcom was unveiled outside Queen's Park Arena, a place Olivia knew well from her many years of playing and watching lacrosse games. The bench features a plaque and the OM emblem on the sides.

“The whole night is really just about gratitude and kindness,” added Bridget during the June anniversary memorial celebration. “It’s sharing stories of Olivia and the impact she has left behind with everybody who cares about her.”

  • With files from Chris Campbell/Burnaby NOW

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