A 24-year-old Canadian man who allegedly stabbed his ex-girlfriend to death and later described the slaying on Reddit has been arrested in Texas after months on the run.
Ager Hasan was taken into custody on Tuesday by the United States Secret Service during a traffic stop in San Antonio, bringing a two-month manhunt to an end, Inspector Michael Haffner of Canada’s Waterloo Regional Police Service tells PEOPLE.
Hasan’s arrest brings to an end weeks of multi-national pursuit — which was made stranger by the fact that he apparently continued to post online throughout his flight, including on Instagram, and was emailing with police.
“It is a great capture for us,” Haffner says. “It has been a difficult investigation since April, but it is nice to have some closure for our community and hopefully it provides comfort for the family.”
Hasan is charged with the second-degree murder of his 22-year-old ex-girlfriend, Melinda Vasilije, who was found dead at her home in Kitchener, Ontario, on April 28.
Vasilije, a hairstylist, was stabbed multiple times.
“We want to remember her for all she was, she was kind, gentle, pure and sweet,” one friend wrote of her soon after her death, according to the CBC. “For all who knew her she had such an uplifting personality and made everyone around her happy.”
An extradition hearing to return Hasan to Canada is scheduled for Sept. 11. It was not immediately clear if he has retained an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
Vasilije’s family has reportedly asked for privacy.
Haffner says Hasan is also charged in connection with an April 3 breaking-and-entering at Vasilije’s house and the assaults on two people associated with her.
“We believe she was the intended target of the attack, but it was thwarted by two individuals who were then allegedly assaulted,” Haffner explains. “We believe their relationship had ended prior to the homicide but it may have been still going on on April 3.”
While on the lam, a person claiming to be Hasan allegedly confessed to the killing in a post on Reddit, the Waterloo Region Record reported in May.
In the post, which has since been taken down, the writer claimed they stabbed Vasilije in self-defense after she allegedly lunged at them with a knife. According to the poster, the altercation was allegedly sparked when they admitted to having been involved with someone other than Vasilije.
“She started freaking out,” the person claimed on the site, according to the Record. “Wouldn’t say a word and just kept slapping me with tears in her eyes. Slaps turned into hits.”
Vasilije then allegedly got a knife. Fearful and shocked, the person claimed, they grabbed a knife to protect themselves.
“I hit her with it, almost blindly,” the post continued. “A few times. I was confused, shocked and scared. I had no intentions of that happening. When I left I honestly thought she just passed out. Then I looked at the blood, and started freaking out and just ran.”
Hasan’s mother, who said she alerted police to the post, told the Record at the time that she believed it was authentic because it included images only he would have.
Police confirmed to PEOPLE that they were investigating the post but declined to comment on its legitimacy.
The Search Is Launched
Haffner says Canadian police immediately focused on Hasan, who crossed the border into the U.S. in Niagara Falls the same day as Vasilije’s death.
He was spotted at least twice, authorities said: once in surveillance video while allegedly stealing a license plate from a vehicle in a Wal-Mart parking lot in Pennsylvania and then again in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee, on May 20.
“It was actually at a truck stop in Hurricane Mills and his conversation was suggesting he was heading for the Mexican border,” Haffner says. “That was one of the theories we had that he was heading south.”
During the manhunt, investigators had contact with Hasan via email.
“We were encouraging him to contact us and he did and there were email conversations back and forth between him and the officers,” Haffner says. “It was all in relation to him turning himself in.”
Haffner says that Hasan alleged he only had a couple of hundred dollars and a passport when he crossed over the border.
U.S. Secret Service agent Paul Duran tells PEOPLE the federal agency got involved in the case after they received an anonymous tip on Tuesday that someone was receiving or in possession of counterfeit currency.
Duran says that at the time, they had no idea it was Hasan.
“We took the information and were able to identify a vehicle the subject was using and found that it had stolen license plates out of Arkansas,” he says.
Agents set up surveillance outside of a San Antonio apartment complex and observed Hasan’s vehicle drive by, Duran says.
“He was still unknown to us at the time,” he says. “We arranged for the San Antonio Police Department to pull [the vehicle] over for a traffic stop.”
• Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.
Hasan was in the car with a man, whom authorities believe is unconnected to the counterfeit scheme, Duran says. It was at that point that they realized there was a warrant out for Hasan’s arrest in Canada.
Duran says Hasan was allegedly found with seven counterfeit $20 bills.
“The indication is he was ordering the counterfeit bills on the Dark Web Internet,” he says. “We believe he was purchasing them online and having them shipped to him.”
Just before his arrest in Texas on Tuesday, an Instagram account appearing to belong to Hasan posted a message which read, “I’m coming home. It’s time to end the dark path I’ve been traveling and give people the closure they deserve.”
But Haffner says he isn’t convinced Hasan had any intention of turning himself in.
“We were comforted in the end that he was ending the dark path and turning himself in,” Haffner says, “but being arrested in San Antonio means that it might not have been the case.”