Support for LAist comes from
True LA stories, powered by you
Stay Connected

Share This

News

Canadian Man Missing Since January Spotted In Palm Springs, Then Disappeared Again

Our reporting is free for everyone, but it’s not free to make.
LAist only exists with reader support. If you're in a position to give, your donation powers our reporters and keeps us independent.


A 24-year-old Canadian man who has been missing since January briefly surfaced in Palm Springs, only to disappear again. Tracey Beeso-Robichaud has been looking for her son Ryan Robichaud, 24, for the last several months, tracking him from Boston to Southern California.

On Thursday at about 6:30 a.m., Palm Springs officers went to investigate reports of a tent set up in a church parking lot. There, officers found Robichaud, who showed them his driver's license and said he was on his way to Arizona to see some friends, the OC Register reports. A passerby lent Robichaud his cellphone to call his mother, with whom he had a brief conversation, before he left with the passerby to get a meal. He promised to call back, but has since vanished again.

Because Robichaud is an adult who poses no apparent threat to himself or anyone else, officers had no reason to prevent him from leaving, CTV News reports. A private investigator hired by his mother later searched the area to no avail.

On the one hand, Robichaud is an adult and has given no indication he is doing anything other than voluntarily traveling around the U.S. However, his mother says that his bizarre behavior may stem from a brain injury or PTSD sustained during a car crash.

Support for LAist comes from

On Dec. 31, 2015, police visited Robichaud's home and told his mother that they had found his car crashed into a tree. Robichaud turned up at the home four hours later, and had no memory of the crash.

On Jan. 15, Beeso-Robichaud discovered that Robichaud was gone. He gave no indication as to where he went, but called her four days later from Boston to say that he had "died" in the crash and was now being guided by a higher power on some kind of journey. He indicated he could only drive at night or else other people on the road would be able to hear his thoughts. He also told her that he recognized himself in the mirror, "but my brain isn't working like it used to."

After 10 days of silence, Robichaud again called his mother, this time from Los Angeles. He could not recall how he had made it across the country. His mother called the police and an LAPD detective located Robichaud. She bought him a plane ticket home and the detective took him to the airport, but Robichaud didn't board the plane. When the detective found him a second time, Robichaud said he had decided he didn't want to go home.

On Feb. 20, Robichaud got baptized as the First Christian Church in Huntington Beach. That was the last confirmed sighting before he turned up in Palm Springs.

Robichaud is one four of Beeso-Robichaud's sons, who she has been raising alone since their father hanged himself 17 years ago. Beeso-Robichaud has visited Southern California to look for him twice, first in April, then again in May. She told CBC Hamilton that she continues to make weekly calls to hospital, morgues and institutions.

Support for LAist comes from