06/02/2012 03:52 pm ET Updated Jun 05, 2012

Rory Nelson Wagner, Convicted Murderer, Eaten By Bear In Canada

Cannibalism has been all over the news lately, but people aren't the only ones dining on human flesh.

Canadian authorities have identified a body partially eaten by a black bear as convicted murderer Rory Nelson Wagner, according to CNN. The body was discovered on Wednesday, near a 1986 Volkswagen Jetta covered in scratches and muddy paw prints. The driver's side window was rolled down.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police believe that the 53-year-old was already dead when the bear broke into the car and dragged the body out, the Guardian reports. Though cause of death has not been determined, officials found drug paraphernalia and a bottle of liquor inside the vehicle, and toxicology tests are underway. His death is not thought to have been a suicide, according to the Edmonton Journal.

Wagner pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in 1994, after he and two others were charged in the 1993 killing of a man whom they believed had sexually assaulted a relative of theirs. Wagner was on parole, but had been reported as missing from a halfway house since May 23, according to Local 10 News.

The bear suspected of eating the corpse has been caught, CNN affiliate CTV reports. Though the bear is not believed to have actually killed Wagner, officials plan to euthanize the bear in the name of public safety. Conservation officer Darcy McPhee says he and his team have not taken this decision lightly.

McPhee explained to CTV that the body was not decomposed enough to be giving off a strong scent, and yet the bear was comfortable approaching the vehicle and dragging out the corpse. This, conservation officers feel, is a sign the bear may be dangerous to the public.

This article has been updated to clarify that CTV is an affiliate of CNN, but not owned by it.



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