This block brought the unfortunate conclusion to the Missing persons investigation that I began at the end of September. After a few routine calls we received a call that a boat had located what they believed to be a body in the Fraser river. The Canadian Coast Guard assisted and sent their Hovercraft. We boarded the Hovercraft and set out to recover the body.
Once we recovered the body and brought it ashore we waited for the Coroner to attend. A complete investigation to identify the person and determine the cause of death would need to be conducted.
It was Remembrance Day and I was fortunate enough to be cleared from Patrol for the morning to attend one of the Parade’s in dress uniform. Once at the parade I was asked by management if I could lead the Delta Police in the parade as I had a background in Military Drill. My father who is a veteran and also a retired Delta Police officer was the M/C at the ceremony at Memorial Park. He was surprised to hear my voice as we marched in.
After the parade I was fortunate enough to have time to change back into my duty uniform and have a quick coffee at the Legion. I pinned my poppy to the wall in honour of those that have served and still serve as I left.
For the traditionalists I apologize for the facial hair in ceremonial dress, it’s unfortunate that Movember takes place during November for days such as these.
Just as I was getting geared up a call came in regarding a suicidal person that was in possession of firearms. I grabbed the next available car and headed out to the call. The public’s safety is of the utmost importance with calls like these. The call originally came in to a neighbouring RCMP detachment but the person was on their way home to Delta. I checked the street and the person’s vehicle was in their driveway. We decided the safest course of action would be to contain whoever was in the house there and call them outside when it was safe to do so. Unfortunately this means shutting down a road and temporarily inconveniencing people but it’s done for everyone’s safety.
With the proper resources in place a phone call was placed to the residence and the person came out without any issues. The RCMP officers that took the initial complaint and had the background information were on site and took the person into their custody to continue their investigation.
Calls such as these always emphasize why our constant training and team work is so important.
The night continued with a shoplifter who had warrants for trafficking drugs and I ended up booking them into cells and a few routine mischief calls.
On the way home I’d come across a road closure and learned it was due to a significant motor vehicle collision. I took a detour and stopped to grab a quick breakfast. I checked Twitter over breakfast and learned that the collision involved a police officer who worked in Surrey (our neighbouring city to the East). My heart sank when I read that the officer didn’t make it. My thoughts are with his family, friends and co-workers.
My shift was cut short so that I could attend the Pathologist’s investigation in the morning of the person we recovered from the river this block. The shift was spent mostly responding to complaints of fireworks and firecrackers being set off for various family Diwali celebrations. As the fireworks were being used to celebrate a cultural event we tried to ensure that we were fair. Anyone that was setting off fireworks responsibly was reminded and warned that there is a Delta bylaw requiring a permit to do so.
I attended the morgue at Vancouver General Hospital and sat in on the pathologist’s investigation to confirm the identification of the person and determine the cause of death. We were able to positively identify the person and determine there was no suspicious nature to the death.
As soon as the investigation was complete and we had positive identification we attended the family home to notify the next of kin. These are always difficult, there’s no easy way to tell a family that a loved one won’t be coming home. We had a victim services volunteer attend with us. I can’t say enough good things about these volunteers, they come out with us to some of the most difficult notifications and volunteer their time walking people through some very tragic events. My thoughts are also with this person’s family.
During the month between the report of a missing person and the recovery many people were involved. Friends posted “Missing” posters in the neighbourhood and started a FaceBook group. We had the cell phone company and bank flag accounts and usage for clues. Several friends were interviewed to learn the person’s habits and several foot patrols through wooded areas were conducted. We had a helicopter search several areas with infrared cameras. We sent notices and bulletins to various agencies for assistance. In the end it was a tragic conclusion however I hope the family can eventually find some comfort in the closure.
I’m on vacation next block and the week after I have a court appearance and a week of training scheduled. I’ll likely be able to post about some of our training so that I don’t disappear for 2 weeks.