Hunters find car then body
Hunters made the horrific discovery on the evening of Wednesday May 30, while walking in a forest cut block in an area between Kamloops and Merritt.
The hunters initially found an abandoned car off the Long Lake Road. They called police to report finding the 1986 Volkswagen Jetta about 30 metres off the cut block line.
While police were en route to the scene, the hunters began searching the immediate area and discovered the body in the surrounding bush. The remains of the man were found about 120 metres from the car.
So far, police believe the body of the man had been dragged by an animal to the spot where he was found. The hunters also reported seeing a bear in the area before they found the car.
The vehicle was registered to a 54-year old man who was living in Kamloops.
Inside the car, investigators found apparent drugs and related paraphernalia, along with a hockey duffel bag that held personal items and a bottle of alcohol.
The driver’s window of the car was down and there were numerous muddy animal prints and scratches on the car. There was also a dent in the driver’s side door, just under the window. The weather stripping was hanging off the driver’s side window and the side mirror was bent forward.
While police, the Coroner and B.C. Conservation officials were on the scene, a bear returned to the area and was heard in the bush where the body had been found. When investigators returned to recover the body, it had been moved by the bear from the spot where it had been found.
The remains were later recovered without incident and have been transported to Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops.
Positive identification of the remains is expected to be confirmed through fingerprint analyses.
The vehicle has been towed to the Kamloops RCMP detachment where it will be examined by Forensic Identification Specialists.
No name has been released pending positive identification of the body and a notification of next of kin. According to Staff Sergeant Grant Learned of the RCMP, “the circumstances surrounding the man’s death are unusual but investigators have not found any evidence of foul play in connection with the death. The exact cause of death has not been confirmed”.