A Nevada man was found guilty of raping and fatally stabbing his teenage friend.
Bryce Dickey, 20, was convicted of first-degree murder and sexual assault with a deadly weapon on Thursday for the March 2020 killing of 16-year-old Gabrielle “Britney” Ujlaky.
A jury in Elko District Court unanimously voted to convict him of all charges after four hours of deliberation and a week-long trial, the Elko Daily Free Press reported.
Dickey, who was 18 years old at the time, was the last person to see Ujlaky alive on March 8, 2020, when he picked her up from Angel Park in Elko, according to the local outlet.
The girl’s body was found three days later, with a single stab wound to the neck, wrapped in a blue tarp and discarded in Burner Basin, a secluded desert in the area.
Prosecutors said Dickey raped, strangled and stabbed the girl — who had considered Dickey like a big brother, according to a friend who testified during the trial. The pair had been pals for years and knew each other from the local rodeo community, according to the Daily Beast.
Dickey told police he dropped Ujlaky off at Spring Creek High School and saw her get into a green Ford F-150 pickup truck driven by a tall man in a cowboy hat. The man was never found and prosecutors said Dickey fabricated the tale to keep the police off his trail.
The convicted murderer even mourned the death of his “sis” on social media in the days following the discovery of her body.
“Yesterday, we all received [sic] news that made us hit the floor,” Dickey wrote in a now-deleted March 13 Facebook post cited by the Daily Beast. “Around 8 in the morning we all started meeting up at my house to grieve an to mourn britney’s life. Which was taken far too soon. That day I had tears of pain and joy. I wish she could have seen the amount of us that came together to honor you sis. We love you so much. Just know you won’t ever be forgotten.”
Police began to expect Dickey had been involved due to conflicting reports he told them about the last time he saw Ujlaky. They then discovered his DNA inside a condom near where her body was found, as well as on her neck and under her fingernails.
Dickey later told police he had sex with Ujlaky on the day she vanished but claimed it was consensual.
A girl who previously dated Dickey testified that he had choked her on four occasions during their 18-month relationship.
Jurors will reconvene Monday to determine the sentence — a maximum of life in prison without parole — the 20-year-old will face.