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Human remains found in Horsefly

Unidentified human remains have been found on a property near Horsefly.

Unidentified human remains have been found on a property near Horsefly.

The B.C. Coroner Service, the Williams Lake RCMP and the B.C. Conservation Officer Service were called to the scene at a rural property in the community Saturday.

Shane DeMeyer, the north’s regional coroner, confirmed bones had been found near a residence. DeMeyer said the call came in to the RCMP as a bear mauling but says there is no evidence of that having occurred.

He added the bones show marks of “predation” but said, “That’s normal. There’s nothing exceptional about that.”

The coroner service will identify the remains and the time of death. DeMeyer doesn’t know how long that could take. Determining the cause of death could be difficult, he said; however, the bones will be analyzed by a forensic pathologist.

Brothers Gavin and Mike Nicol found the remains while checking on a friend who hadn’t been seen for a number of days.

When they arrived on the friend’s property, Gavin said, they found the house with the lights and radio on and the back door ajar. One of the dogs was tied. There were the remains of fruit preserves on the stove. Nicol said it appeared as though the home owner hadn’t intended to leave the residence for an extended period of time.

The friend’s truck, although uninsured, was also in the driveway, Gavin said. From that he deduced that either the friend was still at the residence or caught a ride with someone.

When the pair went into the apple orchard on the property they discovered a handgun concealed in a bag, several containers of picked apples, the friend’s utility belt, and a partial skull. Later, they also found a shirt. Gavin said each item was in close proximity to the others.

Nicol said it would not be unusual for the friend, who had lived at the property for many years, to “head out on his own” or visit friends for an extended period of time, but he added that he didn’t think he would leave the house as it was.

Editor’s note: Since the coroner has not confirmed the friend is indeed the deceased, we will not publish the friend’s name until officially released.