By Pioneer Staff
info@columbiavalleypioneer.com

RCMP has arrested a suspect in connection with the death of Brenda Ware, whose body was discovered in Kootenay National Park two weeks ago. The suspect, Philip Toner, 41, has been charged with one count of second degree murder in relation to the homicide of 35-year-old Brenda Ware, who is from Didsbury Alberta

On Thursday, May 6, Ware’s body was found 54 kilometres northeast of Radium Hot Springs, along Highway 93 in the park. The BC RCMP Southeast District Major Crime Unit immediately treated the incident as a suspicious death investigation, and a few days later, put out a press release seeking assistance in finding Toner, describing him as a person of interest in the investigation.

On Tuesday, May 11, Lake Country RCMP arrested Toner, who has connections to both B.C. and Alberta, in the Okanagan. Toner appeared in Kelowna provincial courts on Wednesday, May 12, in which prosecutors secured a seven-day remand in order to have Toner transported back to Alberta.

BC RCMP, in consultation with the B.C. prosecutors liaised with the Alberta prosecutors to lay the official charge in Alberta courts, as police alleged the offence was carried out in Alberta.

“Although a charge has now been laid in relation to this complex, inter-provincial criminal investigation, the investigation is still very much active and ongoing at this time, we continue to share Toner’s photo in an effort to advance the investigation,” said BC RCMP Major Crime Section acting officer-in-charge (A/OIC) Superintendent Sanjaya Wijayakoon in a press release. “We renew our previous public plea for information, and ask that anyone who may have had contact with Philip Toner between May 4, 2021 and May 11, 2021, in either B.C. or Alberta, to come forward immediately. Furthermore, we ask anyone who may have provided or offered a ride to anyone hitch-hiking between the Columbia Valley and Lake Country to come forward as well. You may have information that is of value to the investigation.” 

Anyone with any information is asked to contact the Southeast District Major Crime Unit Information Line at 1-877-987-8477.