Police search property on Salmon River Road in north Okanagan

Click to play video: 'Salmon River Road investigation has neighbour concerned' Salmon River Road investigation has neighbour concerned
Salmon River Road investigation has neighbour concerned – Oct 20, 2017


RCMP are staying tight-lipped about what prompted them to search a Salmon River Road property on Thursday.

Police only said that they executed a search warrant “in relation to an ongoing investigation”.

“No further information is being released at this time, in order to ensure the integrity of the ongoing investigation,” said Cpl. Dan Moskaluk in a media release.

However, last Friday police issued a warning related to Salmon River Road after a woman was allegedly threatened with a firearm earlier this year.

Police said a man and woman used a “website utilized by escorts and sex workers” to arrange a meeting in the area of Salmon River Road.

“The victim reported to police, that upon arriving at the agreed upon location in her own vehicle, the male suspect produced a firearm and threatened her. The victim was able to flee the scene unharmed,” said Moskaluk.

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Neighbour Ryan McDonald tells Global News his wife heard a gunshot in August and told investigators, who shared information about the woman at the property.

“Somehow she managed to get away from him,” McDonald said. “Our first interaction with the RCMP was when they were questioning about that.”

But since August, McDonald said police have been back to the area numerous times with a large police presence on the road two weeks ago.

“And then it was all quiet. There was nothing going on. And fast forward to today, all hell’s breaking loose at the neighbours here.”

READ MORE: Okanagan sex workers warned after woman allegedly threatened with firearm

The 2200 block of Salmon River Road, where police are searching, also runs parallel to Yankee Flats Road.

Both Ashley Simpson, 32, and Deanna Wertz, 46, were living on Yankee Flats Road before they disappeared separately in 2016.

READ MORE: ‘They are not forgotten’: walk planned for missing north Okanagan women

Police have said foul play may have been a factor in Simpson’s disappearance.

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RCMP declined to comment on whether their search is connected to either the public warning or the disappearances.

McDonald is concerned about the missing women’s cases in the area.

“About a year or so ago, the RCMP had a road block down [the road] just before the Silver Creek Store and they were stopping people and showing a picture of this woman and asking if anybody had seen her walking along the road and such,” McDonald told Global News.

McDonald said while he has never met the neighbour who lives at the property being searched, he has seen him many times out front of his house and describes him as very quiet, of slight build, blond hair and in his mid fifties.

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