The search for two men believed to be connected to a series of marine thefts on the south coast of Vancouver Island took a new twist after one was spotted on the Sunshine Coast.
Last month, Saanich Police announced they were stepping up patrols in the Cadboro Bay area to curb a spike in local thefts, mischief and noise complaints over the past few months.
Both Thomas Cudworth, 33, and Jack Chisholm, 23, who at the time, lived on their vessels in Cadboro Bay, were observed by police for failing to abide by court-imposed conditions.
Because Cadboro Bay is bordered by the municipalities of Saanich and Oak Bay, with the waters of the bay itself under the jurisdiction of RCMP, Saanich PD say the area presents a “unique situation.”
It’s leading officers to team up with Oak Bay Police, BC RCMP West Coast Marine Services, and the BC RCMP’s Federal Shiprider Program to crack down on crime and conduct nighttime deployments, keeping watch to catch the suspected criminals.
Both men, who remain a large, are believed to be involved in a “substantial” number of marine thefts since 2021 along the south coast of Vancouver Island.
According to Sunshine Coast RCMP, there was an unconfirmed sighting of Chisholm in Wilson Creek on Sunday, July 17th—an off duty police officer also reported seeing him.
“Police attended as Chisholm was exiting the IGA store in Wilson Creek and when he saw police, he bolted into the bushes across Field Road behind the Canadian Tire at 4380 Sunshine Coast Hwy,” said RCMP in a media release.
At the time, he was wearing what appears to be a baseball hat with the Pepsi logo, dark grey or black hoodie, dark pants and shoes.
Witnesses told police he smelled strongly of campfire smoke so it is believed he is camping in the woods in the area. Officers also believe Cudworth is still be in the area.
Back in May, Cudworth was arrested after police found him on board a sailboat that had run out of fuel and has since been observed not abiding by court-imposed conditions.
Several police detachements are involved in the theft investigation, including Saanich Police, Sidney/North Saanich RCMP, Sunshine Coast RCMP and RCMP West Coast Marine Services.
Read about how we teamed up with the @BCRCMP and @OakBayPolice agencies to address growing concerns of criminal activities taking place in the waters surrounding Cadboro Bay last week: https://t.co/jtygnXj6lx pic.twitter.com/F3v7UDio7K
— Saanich Police (@SaanichPolice) June 24, 2022
Anyone with information regarding the pair’s whereabouts is asked to call Sunshine Coast RCMP at 604-885-2266 or to stay anonymous, tipsters can reach out to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.