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The detective investigating the gruesome murder of Vincentian nurse Shernell Sharon Pierre in Edmonton, Canada, says her killer is a coward.{{more}}

“Only a coward will do something like that,” said Edmonton detective, Dennis Storey, when he spoke to SEARCHLIGHT earlier this week.

Detective Storey said that investigations are continuing into the death of Pierre, and said that while no one has as yet been arrested, the investigation was promising.

Pierre, 26, originally from Barrouallie, was shot to death and then burnt in the driver’s seat of her car, a silver 2003 four-door Toyota Corolla, on March 12th.

Pierre, who spent a month in St Vincent during the 2007 Christmas holiday season, was at the time of her death a nurse at the 259-bed Misericordia Community Hospital in Edmonton.

Her body was discovered at 11:30 p.m. in the burnt-out car on a busy thoroughfare, less than a kilometer away from the hospital where she had half an hour before finished her evening shift, the National Post said.

She had been living in Canada 12 years, and her tragic death has caused shockwaves in Edmonton. Pierre, who graduated nursing school in Canada in 2005, attended the St. Joseph’s Convent Kingstown and Edmonton’s Ross Sheppard High School.

According to the National Post, police spokeswoman Karen Carlson said: “We do not believe that this was a random act…. We do believe the victim likely knew the assailant.”

Speaking to SEARCHLIGHT before leaving last Wednesday morning to attend the funeral in Canada, uncle of the dead young lady Huelin Pierre said that he was shocked to learn of his niece’s death.

“We know you can’t plan for death and it must come, but she didn’t deserve to die like that,” the veteran teacher and Barrouallie community activist said.

He told SEARCHLIGHT that he was very close to his niece, who is the second of his sister Ishbel’s three children.

“It has been hard for me, really hard,” Huelin said.

He also said that as far as he and his relatives know, Shernell wasn’t involved in anything compromising that would cause someone to want to kill her that way.

According to the National Post, police have confirmed this, emphasizing there was nothing in Pierre’s background that would have made her a target for such violence. Police are said to be seeking a man whom witnesses saw in Pierre’s car shortly before it was set alight. He is described as black and wearing dark clothing.

“We just want justice to prevail,” he said.

Shernell’s funeral service is set for tomorrow (Saturday 29th).