Children's shoes filled with a meat-like substance and bone that turned up on a British Columbia beach last week were placed there as a hoax, Victoria police say, and now they want to find the person responsible.
The first shoe was spotted by a tourist on the Clover Island beach August 30. He called police, who found two more shoes that day and two the next. Three of the shoes were stuffed with meat and bones that investigators now say was from poultry, CNN affiliate CTV reported.
The shoes were apparently planted to raise fears after other shoes with human remains have turned up on British Columbia beaches over the past several years.
“It was disturbing, and it was sad to think if it was authentic, this could be the remains of a small child,” Victoria Police Detective Lori Beauvais said.
Police asked the public again Thursday for help in identifying who put the shoes on the beach and said that a similar call last week after they were found produced not a single phone call.
"I’m disappointed in our community. ... To think someone would take on this activity as a joke or a hoax," Beauvais told CNN affliate CTV News.
"This is an abhorrent activity," she said.
Police were checking with local retailers to try to determine where the shoes came from, Beauvais said.
If caught, the person or persons responsible could face public mischief charges, CTV reported.