Andrew Berry, 43, the father of two young girls found dead on Christmas Day, in Oak Bay, B.C., has been charged with second-degree murder, according to investigators. 

Aubrey, 4, and Chloe, 6, had been spending time with their father early on Dec. 25; as allowed under his custody arrangement with their mother, from whom he has been separated since 2013. 

Their bodies were found inside his ground-floor rental apartment on Beach Drive near Goodwin Street. At the time, police said a man was also found inside and was taken to hospital with undisclosed injuries.

Friends of the family identified him as Berry.

RCMP now say Berry has been released from hospital and charged with two counts of second-degree murder. 

The deaths of the two girls prompted an outpouring of grief in the seaside community of nearly 20,000 in the greater Victoria area.

Hundreds attended a candlelight vigil in their memory over the weekend.

Frank Cotton, the girls' great uncle, said the charges were a small measure of closure for the grieving family.

"They were just beautiful, happy children caught up with something that never should have been," Cotton said.

The Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit says it is continuing to investigate.

According to the registry at the B.C. Supreme Court in Victoria, Berry has not made a court appearance and has none scheduled yet. 

With files from Megan Thomas