An autopsy of human remains found in a burned-out SUV discovered off Westside Road Sept. 20, 2020, are those of Erin Chelsea Borgford, 27, of Whitehorse. Her death is being treated as a homicide. (RCMP Handout)

2 Okanagan homicides in 12 days under investigation by major crime unit

RCMP believe homicide victims, linked to Yukon drug trade, targeted

Two Vernon area homicides in 12 days, with victims linked to the Yukon drug trade, are under investigation and police believe the incidents were targeted.

Human remains found in a burned-out vehicle off Westside Road on Sunday, Sept. 20, were identified on Oct. 2 as 27-year-old Erin Borgford of Whitehorse.

On Oct. 1, RCMP responded to a medical distress call in Coldstream. An hours-long investigation led to the closure of Aberdeen and Kalamalka roads. Police deemed the incident a homicide on Monday, Oct. 5, after 27-year-old Zacheriah Bradley, of Vernon, died in hospital from his injuries.

“The victim, who had been shot, happened to gain entry into the home of a medical professional who provided enhanced care while awaiting the arrival of emergency paramedics,” said Staff Sgt. Scott Aschenbrenner of the Southeast District Major Crime Unit.

The major crime unit is conducting investigations into both homicides.

“The investigative teams are aware of the geographic proximity of the two cases,” RCMP media relations officer Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey said Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Major crime investigators are in contact with each other to ensure any possible overlapping information between the two incidents is investigated thoroughly, O’Donaghey said.

“No arrests have been made at this time,” he said. “RCMP wish to reassure the general public that each of these incidents are believed to be targeted and not random in nature.”

Borgford was arrested in Whitehorse on March 4 along with two others. The Yukon RCMP’s Crime Reduction Unit seized drug paraphernalia, suspected heroin and cash. The three were charged with possession for the purpose of trafficking.

Three years prior, Bradley pleaded guilty in Whitehorse to five of 23 charges, including possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking and possession of weapons. The then 24-year-old was sentenced to two years plus one day in prison and was issued a 10-year firearms ban.

Territorial Court Judge Michael Cozens noted in his 2017 decision this was Bradley’s first conviction as an adult or a youth related to possession or trafficking drugs, but acknowledged his lengthy record going back to his youth in Vernon, which includes assault with a weapon and armed robbery.

“I really do wish you the best, Mr. Bradley, with trying to turn your life away from where the pattern has brought you,” the judge concluded. “I will not tell you it will be easy but you can do it.”

It is still unconfirmed if the victims knew each other.

READ MORE: Homicide investigation underway after Coldstream incident

READ MORE: Suspected human remains found in burned-out vehicle on OKIB land


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

RCMP

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP responded to reports of a man in medical distress Oct. 1, 2020. An investigation closed Kalamalka Road around Howe Drive for several hours. Spray paint marks reddish stains along the roadway. (Caitlin Clow - Vernon Morning Star)

Just Posted

Thomas Dawson Peacock
Surrey man, 32, charged with sexual interference

Incidents alleged to have happened in Surrey and Abbotsford

A Mercedes SUV is covered at a gas station in the Clayton area following a deadly shooting there on Sept. 28, 2019. (File photo)
(Delta Police Department photo)
No offence in second incident involving a teen girl being approached in Tsawwassen: police

Police still investigating incident on Oct. 15 where teen girl was approached by older man in a burgundy car

A overview concept drawing of the Central District and its City Plaza, Gateway and Kennedy Heights neighbourhoods included in the Mayor’s Housing Task Force for Scott Road report. (City of Delta photo)
Walkable mixed-use neighbourhoods focus of task force’s vision for Scott Road

Report by Mayor’s Housing Task Force for Scott Road was presented to Delta council on Monday

The number of new COVID-19 cases has risen sharply in Vancouver and the Fraser North region over the last week.
Chart: Tyler Olsen
CHARTS: Weekly COVID-19 case double in Fraser North health area, up 50% in Vancouver

The number of new COVID-19 cases has risen sharply in Vancouver and the Fraser North region.

Over the years, Janice Blackie-Goodine’s home in Summerland has featured elaborate Halloween displays and decorations each October. (File photo)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about Halloween?

Oct. 31 is a night of frights. How much do you know about Halloween customs and traditions?

This house at 414 Royal Ave. became notorious for its residents’ and visitors’ penchant for attracting police. It was also the site of a gruesome torture in August 2018. It was demolished in 2019. KTW
6-year sentence for Kamloops man who helped carve ‘rat’ into flesh of fellow gang member

Ricky Dennis was one of three men involved in the August 2018 attack

Among the pumpkin carvings created this year by Rick Chong of Abbotsford is this tribute to fallen officer Cont. Allan Young.
Abbotsford pumpkin carver’s creations include fallen police officer

Rick Chong carves and displays 30 pumpkins every year

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

An online fundraising campaign in support of the six-year-old boy, Edgar Colby, who was hit by a car on Range Road Oct. 25 has raised more than $62,000 in a day. (Submitted)
$62K raised in 1 day for boy in coma at BC Children’s after being hit by vehicle in Yukon

The boy’s aunt says the family is “very grateful” for the support they’ve received from the community

The Excelsior 4 are set to make their second court appearance in Abbotsford on Monday (Nov. 2). (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)
‘Excelsior 4’: Animal activists set to enter not guilty plea in Abbotsford hog farm case

Animal rights activists expected to plead not guilty to charges, protest for Vancouver scheduled

Dennis Cholowski shows off a Jordan 2 Retro Just Don Blue sneaker, the type of shoe only a true sneakerhead would appreciate. (Facebook photo)
VIDEO: Chilliwack Chiefs alum Dennis Cholowski shows off ‘sneakerhead’ collection

The Detroit Red Wing has been spending his NHL paycheques building up an impressive closet of shoes

Health care employees take extensive precautions when working with people infected or suspected of having COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
WorkSafeBC disallows majority of COVID-19 job injury claims

Health care, social services employees filing the most claims

Vancouver Symphony Orchestra Maestro Otto Tausk. (Photo: vancouversymphony.ca)
50/50 lotto players buck up for Metro Vancouver musicians hit hard by COVID

‘Rapidly growing jackpot’ for VSO’s 50/50 draw as they go online with TheConcertHall.ca

Most Read