Police have charged a third person in the killing of Branson Sanders, the 20-year-old man whose body was found badly burned in a bush in Burnaby in December.

A sixteen-year-old male has been charged with first-degree murder and accessory after the fact to murder, Sgt. Jennifer Pound said in a release.

In March, Brandon Nandan and Shakib Shakib, both 20, were charged with second-degree murder in the death. Their charges have now been raised to first-degree murder and they have also been charged with committing an indignity to a dead human body.

Sanders was found dead on Dec. 2 by a person walking their dog in Robert Burnaby Park, a wooded area south of Burnaby Lake and nearby the low-income housing complex where the victim grew up.

Investigators say Sanders was killed at a home in the 18000-block of 55 Avenue in Surrey and then dumped in the park. Police say there were likely several witnesses inside the house at the time of the murder.

Sanders friends and family described him as a smart, good-natured young man who began hanging out with a bad crowd after high school. Childhood friends say he had recently tried to reconnect with them and talked of returning to culinary school.

Nandan is currently out on bail with several conditions and Shakib remains in custody.