The B.C. Coroners Service is investigating after an apparently homeless individual was found deceased in a tent in the bushes near the Walmart on Eagle Landing Wednesday morning.
Chilliwack RCMP had few details but said the matter was not deemed suspicious and is in the hands of the B.C. Coroners Service.
“There was evidence of drug use at the scene but whether that was a contributing factor to the individual being deceased, we don’t know but that will be up to the coroner to determine,” according to RCMP Staff Sgt. Steve Vrolyk.
One witness said she arrived at Walmart at 9 a.m. and saw a large police presence, and then the Coroners Service taking the deceased person away.
A number of people have been sleeping rough, some in tents, in and around the Eagle Landing area for several months now.
The death comes at the same time there are anecdotal reports of badly tainted drugs on the streets recently. Vancouver saw a spike in deaths last week with 11 people succumbing to overdoses between July 23 and July 28.
Overdoses continue to kill more than three people each day in the province, according to the BC Coroners Service, which reported 620 overdose deaths in B.C. in the first five months of 2018.
B.C.’s paramedics were extraordinarily busy just last Friday, responding to a staggering 130 suspected overdoses in the region.
According to BC Emergency Health Services, such a high number of calls has only ever been seen one other time, in April 2017.