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Who was Rory Wagner?

On Oct. 21, 1993, Rory Wagner and two accomplices kidnapped Andy Kohlman and took him to a remote wooded area somewhere in the Fraser Valley.

They beat him to death and left the body. It was never found.

On Wednesday, May 30, Kamloops Rural RCMP and the B.C. Coroners Service launched an investigation after Wagner's dismembered and partially eaten corpse was located by hunters near Knutsford.

Now 53, Wagner had apparently committed suicide days earlier.

A black bear happened upon his lifeless body, which was sitting in the driver seat of a 1986 Volkswagen Jetta in a remote wooded area off Long Lake Road.

The bruin pulled Wagner from the vehicle through an open window and buried him under a pile of dirt and vegetation.

When the hunters made the grisly find, the bear was still in the area, protecting the food stash.

Wagner had a criminal history dating back to 1977, including more than 10 convictions.

Many were related to alcohol.

In 1996, Wagner was charged with first-degree murder and kidnapping at the conclusion of an RCMP Mr. Big sting operation into Kohlman's murder.

Shortly before Kohlman disappeared, he was acquitted on sexual assault charges involving two of Wagner's nieces.

That's believed to have been the motive for the murder.

During the Mr. Big sting, Wagner told undercover cops posing as gangsters he'd be more than happy to move drugs, collect debts and, if necessary, kill on behalf of the fictitious criminal organization.

He also admitted to taking Kohlman's life.

On the first day of his first-degree murder trial, in April of 1996, Wagner and his co-accused pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of second-degree murder.

Wagner was first released on parole in 2002, but didn't last long.

He fell back into a life of substance abuse and briefly went on the run from authorities until his parole was revoked in 2006.

After another five years in jail, Wagner was granted day parole last September.

He was released on a number of strict conditions, including orders he abstain from any intoxicants, stay away from criminals and drug users, attend counselling and not have any contact with Kohlman's family.

It's believed he moved directly to a Kamloops half-way house and obtained full-time employment.

In February, Wagner's parole was reviewed and extended to last another six months.

He was still under the same conditions — including no drugs or alcohol.

Wagner was last seen alive on May 23. Investigators believe he was dead for a period of days before the hunters happened across his remains.

When Mounties seized his Volkswagen following the find, they said they located drugs and drug paraphernalia, in addition to liquor, inside the vehicle.

Regional coroner Mark Coleman said an autopsy and toxicology test was expected to be completed today (June 1). The results likely won't be known for weeks.

As for the bear, conservation officials have reportedly trapped two bruins in the Knutsford area. It's not known if either were involved in the consumption of Wagner's remains.

Environment minister and Kamloops-North Thompson MLA Terry Lake has said the bear that dined on Wagner's body will be euthanized based on potential public-safety concerns.

UPDATE: Officials have confirmed Saturday morning one of the bears trapped has been euthanized. A necropsy will likely be performed in the coming days to confirm the bear was the animal that ate Wagner's remains.

 

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