More than a year after Angeline Pete vanished from her North Vancouver home, a Vancouver Island First Nation has put up a $5,000 reward for information leading to her return.
In an emotional presentation to media at the North Vancouver RCMP detachment Wednesday, Chief Tom Nelson of the Quatsino Nation said the close-knit community, which is home to much of Pete’s family, was offering the money in the hopes it would help resolve a painful situation for her loved ones.
“Another very beautiful and outgoing person, one of our citizens, went missing,” he said. “This very serious situation affects the whole community.”
Pete was last seen by a friend leaving her home in North Vancouver May 26, the day after she learned the RCMP had charged her with failure to appear in court, according to a timeline released previously by the force. She was not reported missing until August, however.
Carrie Calder, Pete’s aunt, explained at the conference that the family had initially assumed she had left to work with a traveling carnival for the summer, as she had done in the past. They later received conflicting reports from fellow workers as to Pete’s whereabouts, further lengthening the delay.
A week after learning of the disappearance, the North Vancouver RCMP put out a release seeking information from the public. They have published several more releases since. In September, the case was transferred to the force’s serious crimes unit.
Investigators have been in touch with police across the province and into Alberta, and have followed up on more than 100 reported sightings, but have so far been unable to corroborate any of the leads, said Cpl. Richard De Jong, a spokesman for the North Vancouver detachment.
They have spoken with numerous other individuals and agencies with whom Pete might have had contact, and have even administered polygraph tests to some possible witnesses. One of those tests was given to a man with whom Pete once had a relationship, said De Jong. The man is not considered a suspect, he said.
Pete has not accessed her bank or social media accounts since May of last year, according to investigators.
Calder’s voice shook as she described the anguish Pete’s family has suffered since her disappearance.
“She’s a beautiful, intelligent, loving mother” to her eight-year-old son, said Calder. “She’s the kind of person who would give her last dollar or the shirt off her back to someone in need.”
Calder, who said she was satisfied police were taking the case seriously, pleaded for “any little bit of information” that might help with the investigation.
Pete is 28 years old, aboriginal, five feet four inches tall and about 150 pounds with long, dark hair and brown eyes. She is known to dye her hair on occasion and has a tattoo of a butterfly on her chest, according to police.
Anyone with information is asked to call North Vancouver RCMP Cpl. Mike Kokkoris at 604-969-7516.
Follow us on Twitter: @NorthShoreNews