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Police tight-lipped about body found in ditch near Comox

Mar 10 2012

RCMP are investigating after the body of an adult was found in a ditch along the side of Highway 19 near Comox Friday.

The discovery at 9 a.m. by a passing motorist drew a response from both Campbell River and Comox Valley RCMP and the B.C. Coroner's service. The RCMP Air Services and forensic identification section, as well as the Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit, are also involved in the investigation.

The southbound lane of the highway was closed until the evening as investigators examined the body.

Police were tight-lipped on the case, refusing to release the identification, gender or age of the body.

RCMP spokesman Cpl. Darren Lagan would not speculate on whether the person had been struck by a vehicle or had been dumped. "We don't generally touch [bodies]," he said. "We leave that for the coroner's service and they're the lead investigator in terms of determining a cause of death and identity."

Lagan would not say if the body had identification on it or whether RCMP had contacted the person's family.

RCMP investigators are documenting the scene in case the death turns out to be suspicious.

They are also looking at recent missing-persons' cases, such as that of 33-year-old Elizabeth Marie Lagis of Kingcome Inlet, who was last seen on Wednesday in Campbell River. Lagis travelled to Campbell River for medical appointments Tuesday and Wednesday, but never showed up for the Wednesday appointments.

Lagis was staying at the Town Centre Motel and last spoke with her family on the phone at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday.

"Out of respect for the families of the missing people ... we're not going to be making any speculations as to who it may or may not be," Lagan said.

Police are asking anyone who saw anything unusual in recent days along Highway 19 to call Campbell River RCMP at (250) 286-6221.

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