The Williams Lake RCMP have released a photo of a man at the centre of a missing person investigation and another request for information from the public.
Police are asking for the public’s help with the investigation into the whereabouts of Branton Regner. Regner has not been seen since August 9, 2019 following an ‘incident’ on the Rudy Johnson bridge.
Police are remaining tight-lipped about what exactly occurred during the Rudy Johnson bridge incident Friday, but it did result in the missing persons investigation and also the arrest of Jayson Gilbert who remains in custody charged with two counts of attempted murder.
In a news release on the matter on the weekend, police said preliminary indicators suggest the incident on the bridge is linked to the homicide that occurred in the 1100 block of Mackenzie Avenue in Williams Lake August 6 where a 43-year-old man was killed. The name of the victim in that shooting has not been released and no charges have been laid.
Police did say, however, that while police were following up on the Rudy Johnson bridge investigation a vehicle matching the description of the suspect vehicle in the homicide from August 6 was observed on Highway 97 Friday. Following a brief police chase the vehicle was prevented from leaving near Airport Road. Three people were taken into custody, two of those people have since been released pending further investigation into the flight from police offence.
Regner is described as a Caucasian male, 5’11 tall, about 160 pounds with blue eyes and short brown hair and a fair complexion.
The RCMP would like to speak to anyone who may have information on the activities of Regner in the recent past, specifically August 2, 2019 to August 9 2019. If you have any information you are asked to call the Williams Lake RCMP at 250 392-6211.
The scenic Rudy Johnson bridge stretches over the Fraser River about 22 kilometres northwest of Williams Lake. Once best known for how it was built, the bridge has also been known in recent years for more ominous reasons with victims being thrown from the bridge.
Police are not saying whether this latest spike in criminal activity in the region is related to gang violence, which seemed to have taken a downward turn in recent years.