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Police find shoe of Whitby teacher who went missing in January

Durham Regional Police say 52-year-old Jeffrey Boucher is an avid runner and it’s believed he set out for a routine run on Monday, but he has not been seen or heard from since.

Police have found a running shoe they believe belongs to Jeffrey Boucher, the Whitby teacher who went missing two months ago.

For Mr. Boucher's wife, Kirsten, the discovery brings her one step closer to finding out what happened to her husband, who left for his routine morning jog on Jan. 13 and never returned home.

"If it is his shoe, there's only two things to consider," Ms. Boucher said. "One of them is suicide, which I still don't believe is possible. He was the most upbeat, positive person in my life. And the other possibility is someone having hit him somewhere and deciding they better move that body away from where they did it."

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The shoe was discovered by a woman who was walking along the shore of Lake Ontario near Whitby's Heydenshore Pavilion on March 11, said David Selby, a spokesman for the Durham Regional Police Service. The lake is eight kilometres from the Boucher household, an area far from where Mr. Boucher normally jogged. The week he went missing, police conducted an extensive search in his neighbourhood in Whitby's north end soon after his disappearance was reported.

It was another three days after the shoe's discovery that police released the information. "We wanted to make sure it was his," Mr. Selby said.

One of the officers involved in the investigation visited Ms. Boucher at her home Thursday to share the news.

"I said, 'That's exactly the type of shoe he was wearing and even the way they were done up,'" she said. Mr. Boucher had a unique way of tying his Nike running shoes with a plastic accessory, she explained.

Mr. Selby said a small team of police are at the site where the shoe was found, assessing ground and water conditions. They plan to start a larger, more robust search next week, he said.

Ms. Boucher said she believes her husband will be found, but gave up hope long ago that he was alive.

"After five days went by, we were all saying to each other, 'There's not a chance.' He wouldn't have run away or anything like this."

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About the Author

Dakshana Bascaramurty is a national news reporter who writes about race and ethnicity. She won a 2013 National Newspaper Award in beat reporting for her coverage of changing demographics in the 905 region. Previously, she was a feature writer for Globe Life. More


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