Victoria Police say it is conducting a review to determine if there are additional steps it could have taken to prevent a family learning of their son’s death eight months after the fact, and in a Google search.
Scott Grier would have been 36 last week, but he died eight months ago while living on the streets in Victoria.
On his birthday, Scott’s parents searched the web for their son and instead found his obituary.
“We searched his name, and first came up his resolved missing persons case from 2020, then bang, obituary,” Michelle Grier, Scott’s stepmom from Stony Plain, Alberta told CHEK News on Jan. 26.
READ MORE: Parents learn son died in Victoria 8 months ago not from coroner or police, but Google
The family reached out to police, who told her to reach out to the BC Coroners Service. The coroner confirmed Scott died of a fentanyl overdose on May 16, 2022.
When trying to find answers for why the family wasn’t notified, no departments would take responsibility. The Ministry of Social Development saying it is the BC Coroner’s responsibility to notify next-of-kin and the coroner saying it is Victoria Police’s responsibility.
In a response on Friday, VicPD says it has started a review of the file to see if something could have been done to prevent this outcome.
“No parent should have to find out about their child’s death this way,” Const. Terri Healy, spokesperson for VicPD said in an email statement.
“We will continue to work with our community partners to determine processes and ensure this situation does not happen again. We have reached out to the Grier family to offer our condolences in their time of grief and assure them that we are actively looking for ways to ensure that this will not happen to another family.”
The Grier family told CHEK News they would be unavailable this weekend to comment.
-With files from Kori Sidaway