A retired geochemistry professor from the University of British Columbia has been killed in attempted robbery in Valparaiso, Chile, the school confirmed Saturday, June 22, 2019. Dr. Peter Winterburn is seen in an undated handout photo. (Mineral Deposit Research Unit, Martin Dee)

Retired UBC professor Peter Winterburn killed in Chile, school confirms

Global Affairs Canada confirmed that a Canadian citizen was murdered in Chile

A retired geochemistry professor from the University of British Columbia has been killed in attempted robbery in Valparaiso, Chile, the school confirmed Saturday.

In a post on Facebook, the school’s Mineral Deposit Research Unit said Peter Winterburn was killed just before noon on Friday.

ALSO READ: Arrests made in death of B.C. professor Ramazan Gencay in Colombia

Winterburn was a “compelling force” at the MDRU, the post says, implementing a new research program and contributing to student and industry training.

“We are all deeply sadden by his tragic death,” the post states.

Winterburn was walking with his wife and daughter in the city’s Cerro Alegre neighbourhood when two men tried to take his backpack, according to a report in the newspaper La Tercera.

The newspaper reports that Winterburn resisted and was stabbed, and federal police are working to find the attackers.

Global Affairs Canada confirmed that a Canadian citizen was murdered in Chile, although for privacy reasons the department did not identify the citizen.

Spokesperson Stefano Maron said consular officials are helping the victim’s family and are in contact with local authorities.

A statement on the website of the 29th International Applied Geochemistry Symposium, set to be held in Chile next year, said Winterburn had recently moved back to Chile after many years away.

Brian Townley, the president of the symposium’s organizing committee, described what happened to Winterburn as a “shock to all of us, a tragedy that is hard to explain.”

He described “great grievance and disbelief, mixed with frustration and impotence,” at Winterburn’s death.

“Criminal acts such as these (are) impossible to understand within the good norms of life,” Townley wrote in an email.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Sun on its way after Greater Victoria sees wettest July in six years

Environment Canada meteorologists say the drizzle is likely to end soon

Trudeau announces $79M investment for 118 more public transit buses across B.C.

Contributions from municipal to federal level to fund more buses in a bid to cut commutes

Saanich samples the best of local food at Pepper’s Foods showcase.

Tenth annual showcase celebrates local food producers and vendors

After Victoria dad’s death, Technical Safety BC wants changes to trampoline park rules

Jay Greenwood, 46, did ‘a series of acrobatic manoeuvres prior to a fall that caused serious injury and cardiac arrest’

VIDEO: 1,400 classic cars roll into Victoria for Deuce Days

The four-day festival highlights classic hot rods, with a special emphasis on cars built in 1932

POLL: Do you carry reusable shopping bags?

While a court ruling determined the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs have been sold

Victoria company has purchased BCHL team, but will keep it in Port Alberni

“Does Kirby care?” B.C. First Nation’s group using geo-targeted ads in Houston, Texas for justice

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council has called out Kirby Corporation for the Nathan E. Stewart oil spill

B.C. woman wins record $2.1 million on casino slot machine

‘That night was so surreal … I wasn’t able to sleep or eat for the first two days,’ she said

$900M settlement reached in class action on sexual misconduct in Canadian military

After facing criticism, the government moved to begin settlement proceedings in early 2018

Tax take stays ahead of increased B.C. government spending

Tax revenue $2.1 billion higher than budget in 2018-19

Most Read