|Location||Victoria, British Columbia|
|Disappeared||November 28, 2012|
|Missing for||9 years|
|Height||5'4 - 5'5|
|Weight||90 - 115 pounds|
Emma Alexandra Fillipoff (Born 1986) was a woman last seen in Victoria's inner harbour area.
Emma was said to look younger than her age. She was described as having brown eyes; "unusually long," brown hair that possibly reaches her waist; and a tan complexion. Her ears were previously pierced. At the time of disappearance, Emma was wearing camouflage pants and had an orange purse with her, but she is known to also wear knitted hats and dresses. Before Emma's disappearance, she didn't have a criminal record, no history of disappearing, and didn't live on the streets. At the time, Emma had been living in a women's shelter since February of 2012. Emma is known to frequent libraries.
Emma was a vegan and possibly suffered from an eating disorder. In the summer of 2012, Emma wanted to live a more "pure" lifestyle; she'd quit binge drinking, smoking cigarettes, drinking coffee, and eating anything with sugar. At the end of the summer of 2012, Emma ate little food but drank copious amounts of water. One's Emma's friends noted how thin she'd became and described her eating habits as "monk-like."
Life Prior to Disappearance
In the autumn of 2011, Emma moved from Perth, Ontario to Victoria. Before residing in the Sandy Merriman women's shelter, she'd lived in multiple apartments with friends, lived in a hotel she was employed at, stayed on two or three boats, and occasionally slept in the woods. In the winter of 2011, while Emma lived in an apartment with a friend, her friend noticed her obsessively arranging patterns with miscellaneous objects, sometimes insisting other people join her. The same friend also woke up one night to find Emma outside in a "euphoric" state, where she was watching the grass and stars.
Emma had several jobs that didn't last long, but found seasonal employment at a seafood restaurant in early 2012. Her job ended on Halloween 2012 and she was expected to work there again the next February. After summer ended, Emma was unsure of what to do with herself during the winter. By November, Emma began isolating herself from friends; she declined offers to go out with friends, cancelled a trip to Mexico with a friend last minute, and seemed scared to go anywhere that wasn't the pier or shelter. She kept her curtains shut at all times, starting getting rid of her belongings, and once took the furniture in the shelter out of the building because she claimed they were making too much noise and speaking to her. The shelter staff suspected she was suffering from a mental illness, but couldn't contact her parents due to privacy reasons. Instead, they contacted police to request a welfare check. They didn't come over and told staff to call again if the odd behaviour continued, which the staff never did.
That same month, she told friends that she planned on leaving Victoria to travel to Saltspring Island or Tofino, both in British Columbia. She also mentioned sailing a boat to Mexico; travelling to San Juan with a man she barely knew; moving to California, Costa Rica, or somewhere off-grid in the woods; and visiting an aunt in Lantzville, British Columbia. From November 23 to 28, Emma regularly made distraught calls to her mother in Perth, Shelley Fillipoff. They would make plans for Emma to move back to Perth, only for Emma to call again the next day and she was going to stay in Victoria to sort things out by herself.
Two store owners in the Gastown neighbourhood of Vancouver witnessed a man in their store tossing away Emma's missing poster. The man, who claimed Emma was his girlfriend, said she wasn't missing, but "ran away because she hates his parents." The couple immediately contacted police afterwards to report the incident.
In the summer of 2018, a man named William contacted Emma's mother, Shelley Fillipoff, to tell her that he gave Emma a ride to the intersection of Admirals and Craigflower roads on the morning of November 29, 2012. While he was driving from Esquimalt to Saanich, he saw Emma walking on Admirals Road. She jumped onto the sidewalk and was screaming, so he pulled over to ask if she was okay. William noticed that Emma wasn't wearing any shoes and was soaking wet, appearing as if she'd spent the whole night in the rain. Emma calmed down and requested to be driven to a friend's residence in Colwood, but didn't provide a name or address. Because William didn't have time to take her to Colwood, he dropped her off near the Petro Canada gas station at the corner of Admirals and Craigflower roads.
William told Shelley he didn't come forward right away as he feared he'd be implicated in Emma's disappearance but had a change of heart after becoming a father. Shelley believes William's claim.