Washed up running shoes likely a hoax

Analysis will determine what type of flesh inside

Raw meat stuffed into two running shoes found in separate Oak Bay waterfront locations was likely beef or pork, police say.

One running shoe was found stuffed with a flesh-covered bone in McNeill Bay by a woman walking her dog on Monday morning.

A second was found the same day in the waters by Oak Bay Marina, also with raw meat stuffed in it. Two more were found near Glenlyon Norfolk School’s junior campus on Beach Drive on Tuesday morning.

The shoes were likely placed by local pranksters, said Const. Laurence Riel or Oak Bay police.

The shoes were delivered to Saanich police for forensic study.

“I looked at one shoe … and let’s just say the appearance seems to be consistent with that (hoax) determination,” said Sgt. Dean Jantzen of Saanich police.

Investigators then called upon a University of Victoria anthropologist to identify the flesh. “It was more a case of what it wasn’t, and it wasn’t human remains,” Riel said.

Police will continue to investigate the “unexplained meat” until it is identified, Jantzen said, adding that even a hoax could constitute mischief charges being laid.

A coroner will only get involved if the material discovered is determined to be human.

The two shoes were found a week after a woman’s running shoe with a human foot inside was found in Vancouver, the 11th to be found in four years.

– with files from Kyle Slavin

vmoreau@oakbaynews.com