Homicide investigation launched after remains of missing men found near Ucluelet
CTV Vancouver Island
Published Thursday, June 28, 2018 7:07PM PDT
Last Updated Friday, June 29, 2018 7:00PM PDT
Remains found on western Vancouver Island earlier this month are those of missing B.C. men Ryan Daley and Dan Archbald, according to police.
The Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit confirmed in a Friday news release that they are investigating the deaths of Daley, 43, and Archbald, 37, as a homicide.
It came a day after Archbald's wife, Leah Bliss, confirmed that the remains had been identified as those of the missing men.
The pair had returned to Ucluelet on May 13 following an eight-week sailing trip to Panama. They were last seen on surveillance footage leaving a Ucluelet marina on May 16.
Their disappearance set off a massive search. Investigators announced on June 18 that remains were found near the seaside town, but said at the time it was too soon to tell whose they were.
In the news release, VIIMCU said the deaths do not appear to be the result of a random incident.
"Identifying Mr. Daley and Mr. Archbald is a significant step in this investigation," said Insp. Dave Hall, officer in charge of VIIMCU. "We can now focus our attention on answering the who, what, when, where and why, in an effort to determine who is responsible for their deaths."
Police say they recognize the public is significantly interested in the case as well as the missing persons investigation of Ben Kilmer, a man who disappeared from the Lake Cowichan area at the same time Daley and Archbald went missing, but said there is no evidence that connects the investigations.
"Inspector Hall cautions that the widespread use of social media and the internet as sources of information risks drawing linkages that do not exist, or spreading false information that becomes increasingly difficult for police to untangle in their investigation," Island District RCMP said.
The family of Ben Kilmer issued a statement sending condolences to the families of Archbald and Daley, saying they'd hoped the investigation would turn out differently.
“We are deeply saddened to learn that Dan Archbald and Ryan Daley have been found deceased," a family spokesperson said. “With heavy hearts, we offer our sincere condolences to the families, friends, and loved ones of Dan and Ryan."
Family members are asking for privacy as they mourn the deaths.