Human foot found in shoe at Botanical Beach

A human foot has been found inside a shoe on Botanical Beach near Port Renfrew.

Charlotte Stephens of Duncan said that her husband spotted it on Sunday.

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He “was up on the driftwood and he happened to find this shoe. He just picked it up and brought it out onto the beach and we kind of had a look at it for about five minutes,” she told CHEK News. “We thought it almost looks like there is an actual foot bone in it.”

They called Sooke RCMP, who turned it over to the B.C. Coroners Service, which confirmed that the foot is human.

Matt Brown, regional coroner, told CHEK that the left New Balance shoe was manufactured some time after March 2013.

It appears that the shoe washed ashore, police said Tuesday.

RCMP and the coroner are investigating. It’s too early to say whether the situation is suspicious, police said.

B.C. Coroners Service spokeswoman Barb McClintock said an investigation is underway to determine whose foot it is and the cause of death.

It’s at least the 12th foot found washed up on the B.C. coast since 2007. McClintock said of the previous instances, coroners have been able to identify 10 feet, belonging to seven people.

One foot was linked to a man who had gone missing 25 years earlier when his boat overturned near Port Moody.

In the previous cases, foul play was not suspected and police said the feet likely became detached through decomposition.

There have also been hoaxes.

On June 18, 2008, what was thought to be a foot washed up near Campbell River. It was later discovered that someone had placed the bones of an animal’s foot in a sock and packed it inside a sneaker with seaweed.

Then in September of that year, someone placed a plastic foot in a runner on an East Vancouver beach.

In September 2012, Victoria police investigated after five child-sized shoes were found at the Clover Point beach area. Three of the shoes were stuffed with flesh and bones, but tests revealed that they were not human.

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Between August 2007 and November 2012, nine feet belonging to seven individuals were discovered on B.C.'s coast. At least three others washed up in Washington.

• The first foot was found on Aug. 20, 2007, on Jedediah Island, northeast of Nanaimo. The right, male foot was found in a Campus shoe, size 12, available for sale primarily in India. It was subsequently linked to a depressed man who went missing in early 2007.

• Aug. 26, 2007, on Gabriola Island. It was a right, male foot in a size 12 Reebok shoe. The brand was first produced in 2004 and is no longer for sale.

• Feb. 8, 2008, on Valdes Island. A foot, right and belonging to a male, was found in a blue and white Nike, size 11. The model was made between February and June 2003.

• May 22, 2008, on Kirkland Island at the mouth of the Fraser River. This time, it was a right female foot in a size 7 New Balance shoe. The model was made beginning in June 1999.

• June 16, 2008, on Westham Island at the mouth of the Fraser River. It was a left, male foot and DNA testing has matched it with the foot found on Valdes, but the man's identity is unknown.

• Aug. 1, 2008, near Pysht, west of Port Angeles, Washington. A right, male foot, it was found in a size 11 or 12 men's low-rise, dark hiking-type athletic shoe, made by the Everest Shoe Co.

• Nov. 11, 2008, on a Fraser River beach in Richmond. A left, female foot, it was matched through DNA testing with the foot found on Kirkland Island, and the woman was identified.

• Oct. 29, 2009, inside a white size 8 1/2 Nike running shoe on a beach in Richmond.

• Aug. 26, 2010, by a tourist on Whidbey Island, in Puget Sound. The right foot was believed to belong to a woman or child.

• Sept. 30, 2011, in False Creek, an inlet in downtown Vancouver. Human foot and leg bones found in a shoe.

• May 6, 2014, on a beach in Seattle. A human foot was inside a white New Balance running shoe.

In the previous cases, foul play was not suspected and police said the feet likely became detached through decomposition.

There have also been hoaxes.

On June 18, 2008, what was thought to be a foot washed up near Campbell River. It was later discovered that someone had placed the bones of an animal's foot in a sock and packed it inside a sneaker with seaweed.

Then in September of that year, someone placed a plastic foot in a runner on an East Vancouver beach.

In September 2012, Victoria police investigated after five child-sized shoes were found at the Clover Point beach area. Three of the shoes were stuffed with with flesh and bones meant to look like human remains, but tests revealed that they were not human.

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