VANCOUVER EASTSIDE MISSING WOMEN
Victoria sex-trade worker linked to Pickton case
Nancy Clark disappeared from streets in August, 1991
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
The family of Nancy Clark, a Victoria sex-trade worker, was notified Tuesday that the task force probing the Port Coquitlam pig farm of accused serial killer Robert (Willie) Pickton has obtained evidence connecting her 1991 disappearance to its ongoing investigation.
Victoria police Acting Insp. Les Sylven said he could not confirm any further details about the connection between Clark and the task force, including whether police found her DNA on Pickton's farm.
"Investigators from the Victoria Police major crime unit received information from the missing women's task force that evidence has been obtained connecting the 1991 disappearance of Nancy Clark to their investigation on the Lower Mainland," Sylven said in a statement.
The task force has seized tens of thousands of exhibits from Pickton's farm, and some of that evidence is being analysed in police labs across the country.
"All I can say is that they collected some evidence -- that connects with our Nancy Clark missing person's file -- in relation to their investigation in the Lower Mainland," Sylven said in an interview Tuesday night.
He said he was not aware of any charges being laid in connection with Clark's disappearance.
Sylven said Victoria police "threw everything we had" at the Clark case, but had few leads in recent years. However, that has all changed now.
"This has opened up the investigation for us and we'll be working hard over the next little while to try to figure out what's happened," he said. "Although it's an old case, this is a new development so we're off and running again."
Pickton stands charged with killing 26 missing sex-trade workers whose DNA was located on Port Coquitlam property during a search between February 2002 and November 2003. The 26 women disappeared between 1995 and 2001.
"Earlier [Tuesday], members of Nancy Clark's immediate family were notified of the development," Sylven said.
This development could bring to 33 the number of women tied to the Pickton farm through evidence analysed by police, including:
- The 26 women he is charged with killing.
- Dawn Crey and Yvonne Boen, whose DNA was found on the Pickton farm, but police say there was not enough evidence to lay murder charges in those cases.
- Four unidentified women Pickton has not been charged with killing.
- Nancy Clark, although there is no indication if police intend to ask Crown counsel to approve a charge in the case.
The RCMP's media relations unit did not respond to phone messages.
Nancy Clark, also known as Nancy Greek, was 25 when she was last seen in downtown Victoria on the evening of Aug. 22, 1991. An extensive investigation was conducted at that time.
She was not added to the official list of more than 60 missing women until December, 2001.
In an interview with The Sun in the fall of 2001, now-retired Victoria police Sgt. Don Bland said he did not think Clark belonged on the list of missing women who mainly vanished from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. Bland said Clark did not have a connection to Vancouver, and had only worked the streets in the capital.
Concerns about Clark's well-being were raised one day after her disappearance because she had failed to return home to look after her two daughters -- aged eight years and eight months -- which was out of character.
"It was the birthday of her child that day, and for a sex street worker, she was a bit of a home-body. That's what was suspicious at the start, because she would never have done that," said Bland.
In an interview with The Sun in 1991, just days after her disappearance, Clark's brother, Doug Greek, said he wasn't optimistic she would be found alive.
"I think she's dead somewhere," Greek said at the time. "I'd like to see the person or persons caught."
He said his sister, who was on welfare, stopped working the streets after another Victoria sex-trade worker was found slain, but returned about two weeks before her disappearance.
Pickton will face six counts of first-degree murder in his first trial, set to begin Jan. 8, 2007. Jury selection is scheduled for December. A separate trial on 20 counts is to follow. Pickton has pleaded not guilty on all counts.
© The Vancouver Sun 2006
Updated: August 21, 2016