Canadian floating feet mystery deepens
Police search the Vancouver inlet Tuesday where a severed foot was discovered.
September 1st, 2011
11:38 AM ET

Canadian floating feet mystery deepens

For the 11th time in the past four years, a human foot in a sport shoe was found on a Pacific Northwest shoreline.

Foot No. 11 was found Tuesday near a marina in an inlet called False Creek, police in Vancouver, British Columbia, said. Foul play was not suspected because there was no sign of trauma, coroner Stephen Fonseca said in a report from CNN affiliate CBC.

“These human remains did not show any evidence of trauma whatsoever,” CBC quoted Fonseca as saying.

DNA samples from foot No. 11 will be compared to DNA obtained from family members in missing persons cases to try to establish an identity, he said.

So who do the feet belong to and how did they meet their demise?

One foot, found in August 2007 on Jedediah Island, British Columbia, was identified as coming from a deceased man whose family did not want further details released, according to a report in the Vancouver Sun.

But the rest remain a mystery, according to a list in the Vancouver Sun.

Mark Mendelson, a Toronto forensics consultant and former police detective, said on the TV program "Canada AM" on Thursday that he's not buying that anything nefarious is, well, afoot.

"You have to think dirty," he said.

"I don't know if you can look at this as just a coincidence," he said, pointing out that he thinks there are too many questions that don't have logical answers.

"Why is it only happening on the west coast near Vancouver… why aren’t these feet floating up off Nova Scotia or St. John’s, Newfoundland, or off the coast of New Jersey," Mendelson asked.

And why only feet in running shoes?

Where are the rest of the body parts?

“Body parts do eventually make their way to the surface. So why are we only getting feet? Why are they in running shoes,” he asked.

Simon Fraser University forensics researcher Gail Anderson offers answers in a report on the website vancouver.24hrs.ca.

“We have an awful lot of people missing in our waters, either from accidental cases or people who deliberately entered the water,” the website quotes Anderson as saying. “We’re talking four years and 11 feet. That’s really not that many at all.”

And if the shoe floats?

University of British Columbia materials engineering professor Anoush Poursartip tells vancouver.24hrs he has a theory on that.

“The polymers used in running shoes are chosen partially for their light weight. This means the shoe has significant buoyancy,” he told the website.

So the shoes are dragging the feet to the surface but leaving the rest of the body in the depths?

“I’m not sure I buy the theory it’s because the shoe floats,” Mendelson said in the "Canada AM" interview.

But one thing is certain, Mendelson said.

"Something is very, very strange here.”

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soundoff (533 Responses)
  1. TI

    if this is a routine thing with decomposition, are there other cases in river systems likewise?

    September 1, 2011 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Andrew

      Sounds like a serial killer to me. The suspect is hunting people that are out on a jog/run, prbly alone and in quiet area out of sight. Finding prey for the suspect isnt that difficult, but like any good serial killer, the suspect takes their time tracking the victim and prbly tricking them into a dangerous situation or ambushing them. Either that or its a monsterrrrrrrr, dark days are coming....

      September 1, 2011 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shoe Fits

      Andrew it is really easy to get a homeless drug addict into your car.. especially a guy.. just off them drugs.. if it was someone jogging.. that is a relatively affluent person and their loved ones would report them missing within hours... and they would easily identify their shoes and be able to help with a DNA match..

      One of these shoe dead people was identified.... but the rest... no one cares about... they are not missing of of a ship or airplane or kayaking... no one is looking for the rest of them... homeless people are easy prey for serial killers because no one notices the missing... they are homeless because of mental health and addiction issues..

      September 1, 2011 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
  2. bigfoot

    Bigfoot is at it again

    September 1, 2011 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Mark9988

    Visiting Canada? Leave your feet at home.

    September 1, 2011 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Mason

    Sounds like a serial killer messing with the cops

    September 1, 2011 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. periboncq

    I like the "did not show signs of any trauma"... yeah except for the fact that they were SEVERED!!

    September 1, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Eliz

      not severed – they detached naturally after decomposition....no one is running around chopping off the feet of people in running shoes

      September 1, 2011 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shoe Fits

      yeah thank goodness no one is running around cutting people's feet off... THERE ARE DEAD PEOPLE IN THE OCEAN... oh well as long as my feet aren't going to be CUT OFF so I have nothing to worry about. :-)

      September 1, 2011 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  6. guest

    has anyone fallen for the T.Mobile 49.99 plan for voice, data and internet. you get into the store then they tell you have to buy a 300.00 phone to qualify. talk about fase advertising.

    September 1, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • stillwaters

      Uhhhh...T-Mobile is in Canada?

      September 1, 2011 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Slugbait

    “These human remains did not show any evidence of trauma whatsoever,”

    Except, maybe, the fact that there was no body attached to that foot...?

    September 1, 2011 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. mellow replies

    It must be the muslims. They are probably doing some type of sacrifice.

    September 1, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Guest

    I remember watching an episode of "Bones" where they solved one of these murders, it's interesting to see that it was based on a real life event.

    September 1, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Brett

    Just A Foot In Cold Water singin' Make Me Do Anything You Want.

    September 1, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Nick

    They should call in Booth and Brennan they dealt with a similar case on bones

    September 1, 2011 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. StackDat

    “These human remains did not show any evidence of trauma whatsoever,”

    Yeah...I just hate it when I'm walking down the sidewalk and my foot falls off.

    September 1, 2011 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Brett

    Ahhh the agony of da feet.

    September 1, 2011 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Dexter

    Time for Dexter to step in :)

    September 1, 2011 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Shoe Fits

    Where is Shoelock Holmes when you need him?

    September 1, 2011 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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