British Columbia

B.C. Coroners Service looking for info in case of foot washed ashore in West Vancouver

The B.C. Coroners Service is looking for help from the public in identifying a foot that has washed ashore in West Vancouver last September.

The foot was found in September in a men's size 9½ Nike Free RN running shoe

The foot was found in September on a beach in West Vancouver, inside a men's size 9.5 running shoe. (B.C. Coroners Service)

The B.C. Coroners Service is looking to the public for help identifying another foot that washed ashore in West Vancouver last September.

It's the 15th case, since 2007, involving a human foot found along the shore in southwest B.C. 

"Typically, our process would be that we would work with any of the available information that we would find at a scene to help determine the identity, but, in this case, we've exhausted those options," said Andy Watson, a spokesperson for the coroners service.

"So, now we're turning to the public, in hopes that we can get some information to help create a match and determine the identification," said Watson.

The human foot was found inside a shoe with an Ortholite insert. The shoe was believed to have been manufactured between Feb. and April, 2017. (B.C. Coroners Service)

The left foot was found inside a blue sock and light grey Nike Free RN running shoe with a black swoosh logo. It's a men's size 9½ shoe with Ortholite inserts, according to Watson.

Watson said the the shoe was believed to have been manufactured between Feb. 1 and April 17, 2017, and appeared to be in relatively new condition. He believes the victim would have acquired the shoe sometime in the spring or summer of 2017.

Investigators believe the foot belonged to someone under the age of 50, but DNA analysis hasn't been able to create a match with any missing persons files.

Since 2007, 10 of the 15 missing feet cases have been solved — all tied to missing person investigations, but this case, and four others, remain a mystery.

"I mean, certainly, it is an odd trend. One thing that we know is that these feet that are found — they're not linked to any sort of suspicious circumstance," said Watson. "I want to clear that up to make sure people are aware this isn't a cause for panic."

The B.C. Coroners Service says 10 of the 15 feet cases since 2007 have been solved. (B.C. Coroners Service)

According to Watson, feet are often the part of human remains that are found, as they easily disarticulate from the body and remain afloat, due to the foam shoe sole.

He said the location the foot was found — the beach near 30th Street in West Vancouver — may not have much to do with the location a person went missing, due to the active tide systems in the region.

Anyone who can help identify the person whose foot was found is asked to contact West Vancouver police or the B.C. Coroners Service.


Is there more to this story? Email rafferty.baker@cbc.ca

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About the Author

Rafferty Baker is CBC Vancouver's mobile journalist. Follow him @raffertybaker

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