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James Smith attacks: three police officers emotionally recount killer's arrest | Knife attacks in Saskatchewan

Constables Travis Adema and Bill Rowley both participated in the arrest of Myles Sanderson.

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Three of the police officers who arrested Myles Sanderson, the perpetrator of the September 4, 2022 attacks in Saskatchewan, remember with emotion the moment when the fugitive was apprehended. Constables Bill Rowley, Travis Adema and Sean Nave all testified at the coroner's inquest into the arrest and death of Myles Sanderson.

On September 4, 2022, Myles Sanderson stabbed 11 people, including his brother, Damien Sanderson, and injured 17 others in the James Smith Cree Nation and the neighboring village of Weldon, Saskatchewan. This is the worst stabbing attack in Canadian history.

A three-day manhunt followed, until the forces of The order spotted the stolen car in which Myles Sanderson was traveling on September 7 near the village of Rosthern, 66 km northeast of Saskatoon.

Shortly after his arrest, the fugitive found himself in a state of respiratory distress. Paramedics were called to the scene to take him to a Saskatoon hospital, where he was eventually pronounced dead.

While a team of police officers pursued the van the fugitive was in on Highway 11, Constable Sean Nave s was blocking traffic in order to ensure public safety.

The latter also admits to having pushed shouts of joy when he learned that Constable Heidi Marshall had managed to drive Myles' vehicle into a ditch.

This relief, however, quickly turned into worry for his colleagues, says an emotional Sean Nave.

Knife attacks in Saskatchewan

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Knife attacks in Saskatchewan

Consult the complete file


It was an extremely chaotic situation, remembers Bill, for his part Rowley about the time he and his colleagues tried to pull Myles Sanderson out of his van.

< p class="Text-sc-2357a233-1 fnWfaZ">I thought he was going to come out with a knife or a gun. I expected him to shoot.

A quote from Bill Rowley, police officer

Bill Rowley remembers that the fugitive, while still in his vehicle, seemed to take frantically something from his thighs and bring it to his face. These movements were also noticed by his colleague, Travis Adema, who suspects that Myles was using drugs at the time. A plastic bag containing cocaine was also discovered at the time of the arrest.

L' The fugitive's autopsy later determined that Myles Sanderson died of a cocaine overdose.

He was arrogant. He was laughing and telling us we should have shot him, Mr. Rowley remembers. He asked us how many people he had killed. He was very arrogant.

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Police officer Heidi Marshall was congratulated on numerous occasions in recent days for her induced immobilization technique which made it possible to put an end to the car chase. (File photo)

It wasn't until Myles was handcuffed that the medical situation The man's body deteriorated dramatically.

His body tensed, then he started to shake. I knew something was wrong, the policeman recalls, his throat tight with emotion.

Based on my previous experiences, I knew he was going to die.

A quote from Bill Rowley, police officer

Once on scene, Sean Nave, a former paramedic, immediately began offering first aid to Myles.

When I arrived, I saw that Myles was handcuffed, but he seemed aggressive to me . It was as I got closer that I understood that he was in medical distress.

Initially believing that the inmate was having an epileptic seizure, the idea of ​​an overdose slowly occurred to him. It was also Sean Nave who administered the two doses of naloxone.

Immediately called for assistance, paramedics were able to take Myles Sanderson to the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon. However, already in the ambulance, no heartbeat or pulse was perceptible, despite the medical care that continued to be administered to him.

Myles Sanderson was finally pronounced dead once he arrived at the hospital.

As we began the mid-day break, Eddie Head, the representative of Myles Sanderson's family in this investigation, wanted to speak on behalf of the James Smith community.

Mr. Head thanked Saskatchewan's Chief Coroner, Clive Weighill, for his work, particularly during this inquest, but also during the one held in January. The latter focused on the victims and the means to be taken to prevent a similar tragedy from happening again.

En as a sign of thanks, a canvas painted by an artist from the Cree Nation was given to him.

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Saskatchewan Chief Coroner Clive Weighill said he was humbled to receive this gift from the community.

Clive Weighill, moved, said he was happy to see that these two investigations, in addition to their legal aspect, have allowed families in the community to come together and support each other.

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Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116