WATCH: Nanaimo RCMP is investigating a suspicious death in the city’s south end. Kendall Hanson reports.
Friends are mourning the death of Richard Sitar as Nanaimo RCMP continue to investigate.
Investigators spent Tuesday trying to piece together the deadly events of the night before, canvassing the area around the Harbour View Manor apartments, where the body of a man was found in his second-floor unit around 7 p.m.
Friends have identified him as Richard Sitar.
“He was just such an amazing person like I said there’s not a bad thing I could say about him,” said friend Melanie Simpson.
“He was a great person,” said friend Cherry Ylikangas. “He was always friendly, helpful to everybody.”
Neighbours say Sitar’s partner left to get something to eat last evening.
When she returned she found their unit’s door ajar and Sitar was inside, severely injured following an apparent assault.
She then started screaming.
“Screaming hysterically saying ‘he’s not breathing’,” recalled Chris Hadley, who was in another unit on the same floor at the time. “And ‘who could’ve done this’ and ‘how did nobody hear what happened’ because I’m assuming she thought it would be loud.”
First responders arrived soon after.
Phoenix Caine was walking by the building with his fiance and learned it could be another case of murder
“It is very concerning especially with what has gone on in the past year,” said Caine. “There was the homicide at the Howard Johnson and the disappearance and then homicide of Maykala and now this instant here.”
Sitar did have a criminal record and was currently serving a conditional sentence for possessing stolen property.
Though the building has multiple surveillance cameras, police say they are still looking for suspects and a motive.
“We don’t have a lot of details at this time to share except to reassure the public that this is an isolated incident,” said Cpl. Jon Stuart with Nanaimo RCMP. “There’s not somebody out there that the general public has to be concerned about. ”
Today, friends are remembering Sitar’s kindness.
Just last night he helped one of them change a broken tail light.
“There’s no words to express how I’m feeling right now,” said Simpson. “All I know is that when I come back in here to visit I can’t see his face anymore. I don’t know why or who would want to do this.”
Changing the taillight was likely one of the last things he did before he was attacked and killed, a suspicious death that so far remains a mystery.
See the first online CHEK News story about the incident here.