The May 6 fire that engulfed the Old Plaza hotel has since been deemed suspicious and the investigation is on going. (Victoria Police)

Trailer occupied by missing Plaza Hotel caretaker, not evidence says VicPD

Mike Draeger is still considered missing, not a suspect

One man is still missing months after a massive fire tore through the Plaza Hotel early May.

Mike Draeger, the caretaker of the hotel, was known to sometimes occupy the hotel and the chrome Airstream trailer parked in the hotel’s back alley.

On June 28, Victoria Police confirmed the fire was arson. Following reports the Airstream trailer was sold by the owner of the towing company responsible for its removal, Police Chief Del Manak says the vehicle was not considered evidence in the investigation.

RELATED: Victoria Police confirm downtown Plaza Hotel fire was arson

“Any evidence that we feel would have been critical to the investigation, we would have seized,” said Manak, while at an event regarding back to school road safety.

Although he isn’t directly involved in the investigation, Manak is briefed on the details regularly.

“[The trailer has] been sold and it’s moved on, it wasn’t required as a part of the key pieces of evidence,” said Manak.

RELATED: Former coworker finds it strange that caretaker is missing after fire

Details of the arson have not been released, but earlier comments from Victoria Fire Department Chief Paul Bruce alluded to the possibility of a fire accelerant in the building’s basement, saying that the fire was “either burning undetected for a long time, or there was rapid fire spread.”

Both VicPD and the BC Coroners Service say no human remains were located in the debris.

According to Manak, Draeger is not considered a suspect at this point and is still considered missing.

“It’s kind of a bit of a unique situation that we haven’t dealt with all that often,” he said. “When you’ve got an arson of that magnitude and then a missing person … [it] has been a bit of a challenge but we’re doing the best we can and continue to follow some active leads.”

There are currently no suspects in the arson investigation, added Manak.

– With files from Nicole Crescenzi



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

Just Posted

Vancouver Island seniors get a kick out of ’walking soccer’

Provincial invitational tourney to be staged in Nanoose Bay

Bee business looks to new heights in Cumberland

Comox Valley community considering changes to encourage rooftop beekeeping

White magic in Black Creek: Wiccan church congregation seeing growth

North Island woman named high priestess of Aquarian Tabernacle Church of Canada

Robert Barron column: Let’s hope the strike is really over

I’m quite curious to see what terms the United Steelworkers agreed to

T.W. Paterson column: There’s never been a generation gap for this columnist

As humble copy boy at the Daily Colonist I have gone where no others would go before me.

VIDEO: Minister reports ‘modest progress’ after blockade talks with First Nation

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs say Coastal GasLink does not have authority to go through their lands

Canadian nurses’ unions warn national standards for coronavirus protection too low

President says safety protocols nationwide are inadequate compared to those in Ontario and other countries

Murder of sex worker exposes Canada’s hypocrisy on prostitution: advocate

A 2014 law made purchasing sex or benefiting from the selling of sex illegal

Wet’suwet’en return to northern B.C. forest road pipeline workers move through: First Nation

Opponents of a pipeline who support the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs have reoccupied camps at centre of arrests

Over a dozen birds found mysteriously dead on rural B.C road

Ministry of Agriculture notified of the strange occurrence on No. 4 Road in Abbotsford

B.C. men arrested after theft of heavy equipment leads to highway blockade

One man surrendered to police while the other was taken into custody the next morning, RCMP say

PHOTOS: Trans Mountain hosts mock oil spill response practice in Kamloops

Practice comes after an excavator accidentally struck the pipeline near Jacko Lake in mid-February

Federal Indigenous services minister meets First Nation at rail blockade

Blockade on Tyendinaga Mohawk territory near Belleville, Ont., is in its 10th day

Most Read