Smithers RCMP have confirmed the body found on Hudson Bay Mountain Sept. 15 was Jessica Patrick’s (Balczer).
The press release sent out six days later on the afternoon of Sept. 21 did not give a cause of death, stating the RCMP was still working with the BC Coroner Service to determine that. The case is under criminal investigation.
Jessica’s body was released to the family Sept. 20. A memorial open to the public is being held Sept. 22
Family members confirmed Jessica was found at a vigil held in her honour at Bovill Square in Smithers on Sept. 16.
Jessica was reported missing Sept. 3 and an RCMP press release was sent out Sept. 6. She was reported as having left the Mountain View Motel in Smithers in the early morning hours of Aug. 31.
The following is the full press release sent out Friday, Sept. 21:
Earlier this month the Smithers RCMP issued a media release seeking the public’s help to locate, 18 year old, Jessica Balczer.
Jessica was a member of the Lake Babine Nation. Many people, including friends and family, have come forward and provided information to help the RCMP with the investigation. Others have come forward knowing it was the right thing to do for Jessica, her family, and the community. Thank-you to all those people who care about Jessica, and want to do the right thing.
When Jessica wasn’t located the North District RCMP sent a progressively expanding team of Major Crime Unit resources, who shortly after, took over responsibility for the investigation. The Smithers RCMP have continued to support the Major Crime Unit. The missing person investigation transitioned to a criminal investigation. The investigative team has obtained numerous court orders in an effort to secure all relevant evidence.
Sadly, on September 15, 2018, Jessica was located no longer alive, just outside Smithers by people who wanted to help find Jessica. The location was on Hudson Bay Mountain Road, at a large pull out, about 15 meters down a steep bank. Those people quickly called the RCMP and protected the scene. Their efforts and actions are commendable.
On September 19, 2018, with the assistance of the BC Coroner Service, formal confirmation was received that the person found was indeed Jessica. The RCMP with assistance of the BC Coroner Service are working together to determine the cause of Jessica’s death. No other information is available at this time.
The investigative team continues to advance this criminal investigation and wants to extend a sincere thank-you to the family and community members who have supported the investigation to date.
Should you have any information regarding Jessica Balczer’s death, please contact the Smithers RCMP at 250-847-3233.
Should you wish to remain anonymous, please contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
Released by Sgt. Darren Durnin
Operations NCO – Smithers