Hamilton police make arrest in Tim Bosma investigation

Hamilton police say they have made an arrest in the investigation into missing Ancaster, Ont., man Tim Bosma. Police will provide an update at 1 p.m. today.

Missing Ancaster man's truck spotted in nearby community and his cellphone was found there

Hamilton police say they have made an arrest in the investigation into missing Ancaster, Ont., man Tim Bosma. They will be holding a news briefing at 1 p.m. today to provide details on the arrest.

Ontario Provincial Police were in Brantford, Ont., on Friday, where they joined local police in the search for Bosma. Police were searching in the area of Oak Park Road.

Earlier on Friday, police announced they had found Bosma's cellphone in an industrial area of Brantford. They also reported  that Bosma's truck had been seen in downtown Brantford on Monday night.

Hamilton police Det. Sgt. Matt Kavanagh said police were calling on businesses in Brantford to check their video surveillance systems for May 6 between 9:30 to 10:30 p.m. Kavanagh added that one of the males had a tattoo on his wrist with the word "AMBITION" framed in a box.

Bosma was reported missing in the Ancaster area on Monday after going for a ride with two Toronto men who said they wanted to buy his truck, a black 2007 Dodge Ram 3500 diesel pickup with the Ontario licence plate 726 7ZW.

Kavanagh said police have since discovered the same suspects test-drove a similar truck in Toronto but didn't harm the seller.

That seller, who was in the Etobicoke area, had also posted the truck for sale online. He told police he found the men suspicious, because they had arrived to see the truck in an industrial area with no vehicle.

"He thought it was odd, because of the size of the vehicle," Kavanagh said. "It's more of a business vehicle than a personal vehicle.

"Fortunately for this person, he's a very large individual. I think he would have overpowered the both of them. I think that was his advantage."

Kavanagh also stressed that at this point, there's nothing to indicate something from Bosma's past led to the disappearance.

He also announced that a tip line has been created. The public can call 905-546-2100 with any information.

On Thursday, Bosma's wife Sharlene pleaded for his safe return, urging the men involved in his disappearance to think of her daughter and their family. 

"He is the love of my life and the father of my child," she told a news conference. "This does not feel like real life. This only happens in TV and in movies. It does not happen in real life.

"Tim has been stolen from us. Tim's world revolves around our daughter. I know she is No. 1 in his mind right now."

The last time she saw her husband was Monday evening.

"He smiled at me and said he would be right back. I have not seen him since," she said. "It was just a truck, a stupid truck. You don't need him, but I do. Our daughter needs her daddy. Please let him come home."

Sharlene Bosma thanked friends, family and strangers for their support.

Friday night, a prayer vigil is planned for the Bosma family at 7 p.m. at the Ancaster Christian Reformed Church at 70 Garner Rd W. Anyone is welcome to attend.

'A lot of feedback'

On Wednesday, police released descriptions of the two men that were last seen with Bosma.

"We have quite a lot of feedback from the public and from other police departments after putting that information out to the media," Staff Sgt. Matt Kavanagh said.

Police didn't provide sketches of the men along with the physical descriptions released Wednesday, but Kavanagh said they may do so if the current leads don't pan out.

"Once we've exhausted those, we might do a sketch, but there's some pretty good leads coming through."

The first man is described as white, six foot one inches to six foot two inches tall, about 180 lbs, in his mid 20s with short, light- to medium-brown hair. He was unshaven and was wearing blue jeans, a long-sleeved orange shirt and running shoes.

The other man is described as five foot nine inches to five foot 10 inches tall with a small to medium build, in his early to mid-20s. He had dark hair and was wearing a red hooded sweater with the hood up over his head. 

Ground search continues

Thursday morning, police continued their ground search in the rural area around Bosma's home where he was last seen but Kavanagh said that part of the investigation is almost complete.

On Wednesday, a marine unit, mounted unit and K9 unit were all canvassing the area. On Thursday, a handful of officers remained on foot going door-to-door.

"I hope it's a big misunderstanding," said Hamilton police Sgt. Jay Turner, who was one of the officers canvassing the neighbourhood Thursday. "Everyone is hoping this has a happy ending."

Bosma was reported missing near his home on Monday after two men arrived to take his truck, which he had posted for sale online, for a test drive. He was last seen with the two men in his truck.

Due to the unusual circumstances, the homicide unit was called in to investigate Tuesday night, but the case remains a missing persons case and not a murder investigation, Kavanagh said.

Bosma posted his truck for sale on Kijiji.ca and AutoTrader.ca on April 28, police said. He was contacted by a man on May 6 to arrange to see the vehicle. Bosma had included his cellphone number in the ad, so there are no email correspondences for police to track. However, police had been tracking Bosma's cellphone, which was shut off after his disappearance.

K9 units, OPP involved

The two men arrived at the house around 9:20 p.m. on Monday evening to check out the truck, and Bosma told his wife Sharlene he was taking them for a test drive. When he didn't return home, she contacted police.

Bosma was last seen wearing dark blue jeans, work boots and a long-sleeve shirt. The 32-year-old father of one owns and operats his own construction business.

Police are continuing to investigate, including launching a widespread ground search with K9 units, Ontario Provincial Police officers and a search-and-rescue team in the rural area surrounding the family's Ancaster home where Bosma was last seen.

Bosma's truck description has been sent to all police and border agencies, but they have produced no information as yet, Kavanagh said.

Police are asking anyone with information on his whereabouts to contact Division Three at 905-546-4930 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.