A woman who provides support for people living in homeless camps in the Qualicum Beach area says she was warned not to visit an encampment near Whiskey Creek where three people were later found dead.
Kelly Morris, a peer-support worker based in Qualicum Beach, said she had previously been to the encampment where the killings occurred. The recovering addict said on her visits to “bush camps,” she brings campers an overdose-revival drug and blankets, and gets them to clean up the area where they’re living.
“These people are being pushed into the bush.”
She said she was visiting bush camps on Saturday night, delivering the drug Narcan, when she got what she considers a life-saving tip.
“I hadn’t been in the bush for about a week,” Morris said. “I got a phone call from a certain party that said it’s not safe for you to go to Whiskey Creek. Get out. Don’t go.
“That’s all I was told. When I’m told to stay out of somewhere, I don’t go.”
Police continued Wednesday to work through the scene of what they’re calling a targeted killing. Three bodies, including two in a burned travel trailer, were discovered Sunday afternoon in a gravel pit at the end of a logging road. A man suffering from gunshot wounds was airlifted to hospital in critical condition, later upgraded to stable condition.
The man was discovered by a motorbike rider, who called 911.
Morris said she doesn’t know much about what happened and why. “Nobody deserves to be shot, no one deserves to die, and there was a lot of people involved in this that shouldn’t of had to die.”
Morris said the people she visits in the 16 separate camps she frequents have nowhere else to go. She said there are more than 380 people in the camps in the Parksville-Qualicum area.
“We do head counts in the bush. If someone’s missing, I will phone the dealers, I will get the information,” she said. “I try to find out how I can help — what help looks like for these people, if they want residential treatment or detox.”
Morris said it’s difficult to get help for them.
“It’s sad but this doesn’t need to be this way. I’ve gotten 183 people into residential treatment already by bringing them in my home.”
B.C. RCMP Const. Chris Manseau said recent efforts at the site have involved forensics officers, a fire investigator, the coroner and the use of a drone.
“They’re going to be processing the scene for a few more days.”