Victoria Head’s favourite time of year was Christmas.
She always tried her best to have a gift for everyone, even if money was tight come the holiday season.
Just a few days before her body was discovered on a cold November morning near O’Brien’s Farm on Mount Scio, she bought her sister-in-law Darlene Dinn a bamboo plant for Dinn’s birthday.
Head wasn’t sure if she’d be able to buy a gift for Dinn for Christmas, Dinn said, so she made sure she had something special for her birthday.
Dinn said the plant is now among her prized possessions.
Victoria, or Vicki to her friends and family, had just turned 36 years old herself on Oct. 12, a month before her body was found.
Her alleged killer, 35-year-old Steve Bragg of Mount Pearl, is now awaiting his next court appearance on Jan. 11 on charges of second-degree murder.
Bragg was a contracted paper deliverer with The Telegram at the time that Head was killed.
He was reported missing the day after Head was killed, but arrived at his home on the following Monday.
Attempts to learn more about the accused have been unsuccessful as of deadline.
For Vicki’s brother Billy Jo Head, there’s comfort in knowing justice could come to his family.
“I’m just happy that they finally got someone in custody,” said Head, outside provincial court after the charges were formally presented to Bragg on Dec. 23.
“Hopefully justice is going to be served. I hope there’s no chance of bail. We all know if they get out on bail and they’re guilty, they’ll do something to themselves. I don’t want that to happen. I want them to suffer like my sister suffered.”
"She was such a good-hearted person. She’d take out her heart and give it to you. It’s beyond belief, the type of person that she was. She was amazing."
Dinn was distraught following the initial hearing. She called after Bragg as he was escorted from the courtroom by police.
“I hope you see her face every time you blink your eyes, you piece of shit,” a tearful Dinn shouted.
Outside the courtroom, the pair reflected on Vicki, as they remember her.
“She was such a good-hearted person. She’d take out her heart and give it to you. It’s beyond belief, the type of person that she was. She was amazing,” said Dinn.
Head was born in Placentia to Marion Bennett and Pierce Head. Her daughter, Jasmine, is 17 years old.
Head worked with various women’s shelters and also with a cleaning service. Dinn says anything useful destined for the garbage from a home she cleaned was donated to a local shelter or an animal shelter, such as Heavenly Creatures.
Dinn said the family was aware of Bragg. They said they had even heard rumors that Vicki had put off advances from Bragg. Head’s longtime boyfriend Allister Hayley, 48, was arrested in relation to Project Bombard, a two-year investigation into drugs and criminal activity that resulted in the arrest of eight men Sept. 29, 2016, but police say Head’s murder is in no way related to Hayley’s arrest.
Police have said that Head was a sex worker, though her family says to the best of their knowledge, that claim is untrue.
All the same, Vicki worked with sex workers frequently. Dinn said Vicki would frequently visit with women in the sex trade, offering them warm clothing or a pack of smokes. She suspects that’s where those rumors of Vicki’s own involvement in the sex trade may have started.
Billy Jo Head says his family has been in repeated contact with the family of Cortney Lake, who has been missing since June 7. Lake’s disappearance has also been classed as a homicide.
“We got our suspect. Hopefully they can get theirs, if it wasn’t the same fella who did take his own life. The Lake family know(s) we’re there. We’re there for each other. You just have to do what you can,” he said.