SYDNEY MINES, N.S. - The province’s Serious Incident Response Team has taken over the investigation into the New Year’s Day discovery of the body of a deceased young male in Sydney Mines.
According to Staff Sgt. Ken O’Neill of the Cape Breton Regional Police, the body was found just after 9 a.m. on Jan. 1 during a search for a missing teenager who was last seen on Wednesday evening.
O’Neill said the co-ordinator of the Cape Breton Regional Police ground search and rescue team and members of the CBRP dive unit discovered the body while checking the shoreline near Pitt Street.
Police had been looking for 15-year-old Kobe Clarence Pink, who was last seen at a Sydney Mines residence just before 10 p.m. on Dec. 28.
While the name of the deceased has yet to be released, local activity on social media appears to confirm that the body is that of the missing teen. On the Facebook pages of the boy’s parents and brother, the prayers and messages of hope from earlier were replaced by condolences.
While stopped in Toronto on his way home from Fort McMurray, Kobe’s brother, George J. Pink, posted on Facebook: “My heart and soul is crushed.”
Following the discovery of the body, the CBRP’s forensic identification and major crime unites began the investigation, but referred the incident to Serious Incident Response Team (SiRT), that has a mandate to investigate all serious incidents "that may have arisen from the actions of police’."
SiRT’s civilian director Ron MacDonald said the referral was made after local police determined the deceased young male may have been part of a group of youths who were at a Peck Street residence on the evening of Dec. 28 when the CBPS responded to an unrelated complaint.
“There’s been no complaint from the public – the referral came from the police who contacted us and said ‘here’s the facts as we understand them’ and as a result of that it was determined that we should conduct an investigation,” said MacDonald.
He added that the initial probe revealed that several young persons fled the scene when the police responded to the Peck Street call last Wednesday evening.
That incident coincided with the last known sighting of the missing teenager. The subsequent search involved family, friends, the CBRP’s ground search and rescue, the force’s five team, the Sydney Mines fire department, and a Department of Natural Resource’s helicopter.
Along with Director MacDonald, a lawyer and former Crown Attorney, SiRT is comprised of two civilian investigators (both former RCMP officers); two full-time seconded police officers (one from the Halifax Regional Police and one from the RCMP); and other police and administrative support as required.
Under the province’s Police Act, the director of SiRT is obligated to file a public report within three months of the conclusion of an investigation.
Anyone with any information on the matter is asked to contact SiRT at 1-855-450-2010.