Archive for June 2nd, 2012

Convicted killer eaten by bear in BC

- June 2nd, 2012

 blackbear

 

According to officials in British Columbia, convicted killer Rory Nelson Wager was pulled from the open window of his car and eaten by a black bear. Investigators believe Nelson may have been dead already.

Here’s the story from the Calgary SUN:

CALGARY - The corpse of a man eaten by a B.C. bear was that of a convicted killer, officials have confirmed.

The B.C. Coroners Service identified the man as 53-year-old Rory Nelson Wagner of Kamloops, B.C., whose dismembered and partially consumed remains were found Wednesday on a remote logging road between Merritt and Kamloops.

The National Parole Board confirmed he had fled a halfway house in Kamloops.

He was convicted of second-degree murder and began his sentence on May 31, 1996, according to Correctional Services of Canada. He had recently been granted day parole.

Wagner pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, along with two other men, for the 1993 killing of Langley, B.C., resident Andy Kohlman, after Kohlman had been cleared of sexual assault allegations involving a relative of Wagner’s, according to media reports.

Wagner had been missing since May 23.

“They let people know when they’re expected to return, if they’re going to be late they’re expected to phone and of course he didn’t return,” said Patrick Storey of the NPB Pacific office.

“They were aware that he was missing, however they weren’t aware until recently that he was deceased.”

Hunters spotted his vehicle on a remote logging road and called Mounties, who discovered Wagner’s body hidden beneath some brush.

Officials believe he was already dead when a black bear dragged him out of an open car window to feed on him.

The fact the adult black bear approached the vehicle, then dragged Wagner out to eat is a serious concern for the B.C. environment minister and conservation officers, who are hunting the bruin.

“The concern is once it has lost its fear of humans, then others it comes into contact with would be at risk and this is an area well-used for hiking and fishing and there’s ranching up there as well,” said Minister Terry Lake.

Traps are set and conservation officers are on the hunt.

Acting Insp. Darcy MacPhee, of the Thompson Cariboo Region’s conservation officers, said the bear is likely to return, but might have moved on for now.

While the Coroners Service is confident Wagner was already dead when the bear found him, it’s still unclear what did kill him.

“We should be able to rule a few things out very shortly after the preliminary autopsy … if there was any trauma or any natural disease that caused death,” said Mark Coleman, regional coroner for the interior region.

“If those are ruled out we’d be waiting mainly on toxicology.”

damien.wood@sunmedia.ca