Update: Kelowna man's body discovered on Rutland sidewalk
Update (Jan. 27 10 a.m. press conference)
He was a father, a golfer, a fun-loving hockey player and reputedly a hard-working guy.
A child of the Kootenays, Christopher Ausman is also being described as a pretty tough 32-year-old man by the many friends and family leaving thoughts, pictures and videos on the Facebook page set up to mark his loss.
Yet something happened to Ausman in the early hours of Saturday that RCMP cannot or will not explain. An officer found his deceased body in a pool of blood on a Rutland sidewalk; the cause of death has yet to be named.
"Certainly this is a suspicious death. There's no doubt about that. This is a 32-year-old man who was found deceased, which is not normal circumstances," said Const. Kris Clark, Kelowna RCMP spokesman in a press conference held outside the detachment Monday morning.
"…We are left with very few other circumstances, yes," Clark admitted when pressed to add the word "murder" to the description. He would go no further, refusing to answer further questions until the autopsy is complete.
Ausman was spotted in the 100-block of Highway 33 a few hundred metres from where it intersects Rutland Road. It was 2:06 a.m. and the officer who called it in is said to have been on a routine patrol.
The spot sits mid-way down a block containing the Cadillac Lounge strip club, the Olympia Greek Taverna Restaurant, a jewellery store and a vacant storefront.
Only the lounge and the 7-Eleven convenience store would have had activity at the hour in question, but police have already found and spoken with several bystanders who were in the vicinity that evening.
Kelly Ausman, Christopher's younger brother, provided Global News with an interview stating his brother was at a poker game two blocks away just prior to his death and may have stopped at the 7-Eleven to get a hot dog, possibly being attacked on his way out. He does not believe robbery is a motive.
Between the interviews, tips and video surveillance tapes collected thus far, one can surmise a picture of what transpired is likely evident to police by this point, yet police are still reiterating pleas for members of the public to come forward with information.
Ausman's personal Facebook account makes several references to smoking weed, but otherwise shows a man with near 900 friends and an active family life with his young daughter.
He was originally from Cranbrook and a memorial page set up by friends and family continues to grow with new collections of photos, videos and comments posted nearly hourly.
"Well, I sure as hell hope someone in the world today had triplet baby boys to try and make up for the loss of this great man! Were gonna need at least three hearts to balance the huge heart that Chris had," wrote Trevor Wicheruk.
"The other side must be having one hell of a good time now that the life of the party has arrived," wrote Jayna Colins.
A dog team was called in Saturday and officers could be seen combing over the scene.
Update (Jan. 26 12:25 p.m.)
Kelowna RCMP have released the identity of the man who was found deceased on a Highway 33 sidewalk early Saturday.
Mounties discovered the body of 32-year-old Christopher Ausman of Kelowna at 2:06 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 25.
Investigators are now looking to the public for help in determining Ausman's final moments.
Anyone with information regarding this incident or who had been in contact with Christopher AUSMAN during the evening of January 24, 2014 and early morning hours of January 25, 2013 is asked to call the Kelowna RCMP Tip Line at 250-470-6236. Remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477, leaving a tip online at www.crimestoppers.net or by texting your tip to CRIMES (274637) ktown.
Police are investigating after the body of a 32-year-old Kelowna man was found on a Highway 33 sidewalk early Saturday morning.
On Jan. 25, at 2:06 a.m., Kelowna RCMP officers discovered the body of a 32-year-old Kelowna man on the sidewalk in the 100 block of Highway 33.
The death was deemed to be suspicious in nature and Kelowna RCMP Serious Crime Unit is investigating.
The identity of the deceased is being withheld pending the notification of his next-of-kin.
Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to call Kelowna RCMP Tip Line at 250-470-6236. Remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477, leaving a tip online at www.crimestoppers.net or by texting your tip to CRIMES (274637) ktown.