Sean Christian Price has been charged with the murder of Masa at Doncaster on 17 March.

The 17-year-old’s body was found near a footbridge in Koonung Creek Linear Reserve in Stanton Street in Doncaster at 6:50pm on Wednesday after neighbours heard screaming and saw a man fleeing the scene.

Paramedics arrived soon after but were unable to revive the Ms Vukotic, who had been stabbed in the upper body.

Price has also been charged with a number of offences allegedly committed earlier today in the Melbourne suburb of Sunshine, including one count of rape, two counts of robbery and three counts of common law assault.

He will be remanded overnight to appear at the Melbourne Magistrate’s Court on Friday morning.

The CCTV footage, released by police on Thursday, showed a man running up Heyington Avenue shortly after the attack holding a white plastic shopping bag which police believe may contain the weapon.

Fresh CCTV of a man boarding a bus near where Masa was murdered was released overnight.

Police are still investigating whether Price has any links to the area where she died, since the linear park is not easy to find.

Detective Inspector Hughes said Ms Vukotic was wearing headphones as she went on her daily walk through a park close to her home when she was attacked.

“If you’re listening to music or something it’s very easy to get, I guess, sidetracked and he could have easily come up behind her,” he said.

“The assault has taken place just at the base of the footbridge, and one of our witnesses has seen a male walk out of that location and we believe that’s consistent with the person going up Heyington [Avenue].”

Police have not released details of the assault.

Detective Inspector Hughes said every indication at this stage pointed to it being a random attack.

“Here we have the death of a young woman going about her business,” he said.

“We’ve got to be careful with our safety, particularly females on their own. It’s terrible that we have to be.

“You look at this location so close to the freeway and yet it is quite obstructed.

“Let’s just hope that we can progress this this afternoon and track this fellow down.”

Detective Inspector Hughes said Ms Vukotic’s family was naturally distressed and had asked for privacy.

They are of Serbian descent having moved to Australia from Montenegro.

A note left at the scene, purportedly from the Ms Vukotic’s “lover”, described her as unique and said she “would always be remembered”.

Police have not located the weapon used in the attack.

The SES and police are continuing to search the area.

Slain Melbourne teen Masa Vukotic was a “loving, sweet, smart” young woman with a zest for life and a bright future.

Friends of the 17-year-old, who was murdered in a attack in a park just metres from her Doncaster home, have taken to social media to pay tribute to the teenager.

The Canterbury Girls Secondary College student loved the colour pink, Japanese-inspired clothing and her pet rabbit.

One friend spoke of her aspiration to become a lawyer, and others spoke of the positive influence she had had on their lives.

“She touched the lives of many people, and she will never be forgotten,” one friend posted on Facebook.

“Forever 17,” another said.

Her former tutor Glenn Nicholson described Masa as a vibrant young woman who was destined for big things.

“She had a good heart, integrity, she thought about the big picture and she was always smiling,” Mr Nicholson told Fairfax radio.

“I think she wanted to make a difference in life. Sadly, I think she will, but not in the way we planned.”

A large crowd gathered in the Doncaster park on Wednesday night. Many were overcome with emotion as they placed flowers at a temporary memorial.

A gathering for Masa titled Princess Marci’s Royal Parade will be held at the Queen Victoria Gardens on March 28.


About Jumpin' Jack Cash
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