Saskatchewan Attacks: Fugitive Myles Sanderson Dead | Knife attacks in Saskatchewan
“Now is the time to start heal our wounds,” says Mark Arcand, Chief of the Saskatoon Tribal Council.
Several RCMP officers assisted in the arrest of Myles Sanderson.
Myles Sanderson, one of two suspects in the series of knife attacks in Saskatchewan on Sunday, died shortly after his arrest on Wednesday afternoon.
Less than an hour before his arrest, authorities had sent out an emergency alert that a person armed with a knife was driving a stolen white pickup truck near Wakaw, about 90 km northeast of Saskatoon.
At approximately 3:30 p.m. Saskatchewan time (CST), the subject vehicle was spotted on Highway 11 near the village of Rosthern, 66 km northeast of Saskatoon
To ensure the safety of other motorists, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officers directed the vehicle into a ditch. Law enforcement then surrounded the vehicle and confirmed that the driver was indeed Myles Sanderson.
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 pronounced dead.
The Saskatchewan RCMP Commanding Officer Rhonda Blackmore held a press conference Wednesday evening.
The Saskatoon Police Service along with the Saskatchewan Serious Incident Response Team will be conducting an independent investigation into the circumstances surrounding this death.
For Saskatchewan RCMP Divisional Commander Rhonda Blackmore, the end of this manhunt allows the entire province to breathe a sigh of relief, she said at a press conference on Wednesday.
However, Commander Blackmore said the RCMP still does not know the motive for the attacks that left 11 dead and 18 injured
Now that Myles Sanderson is dead, we may not never understood the motivations behind these attacks, she said.
Around 2 p.m. Wednesday, Myles Sanderson allegedly broke into the residence of a lady 30 km northeast of Wakaw. Her son spoke to CBC.
CBC has agreed not to reveal the name of either this woman or her son, as she is the victim of an alleged crime. According to her son, the lady is still in shock.
The son says she saw Myles Sanderson walking towards the front door of his home, which was locked. The mother would have quickly taken refuge in the bathroom of her bedroom, locking the two rooms with a key.
Myles Sanderson allegedly broke down all of these doors as she tried to contact the police on her cell phone.
According to the son's account, the fugitive was armed with a knife, but claimed that he did not intend to use it.
Subsequently, Myles Sanderson notably seized the keys to the lady's van and her cell phone.
According to the son, the fugitive asked the woman to follow him, but the latter refused, fearing that he would kill her.
The authorities were finally notified by a relative of this lady, whom she had been able to reach using a landline.
Commander Rhonda Blackmore has confirmed details of this break and enter and the theft of the van.
Since Sunday, RCMP investigators have conducted more than 150 interviews with witnesses and victims. Eleven emergency alerts were also sent to the population.
The autopsy of the victims should be completed by the end of the week. However, details of these autopsies will not be made public due to the ongoing investigation.
In a late Wednesday evening statement in Vancouver, federal Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino first thanked the RCMP for mobilizing all of its services over the past few days. This is an extremely difficult time for everyone living in James Smith Cree Nation, Saskatchewan and across the country. Our thoughts are with them.
When asked about the circumstances of Myles Sanderson's death, Marco Mendicino told reporters that this is why there are different ongoing investigations, including one by Saskatoon police.
Until the fog is cleared of the circumstances of the fugitive's death, priority is given to the families of the relatives of the victims, repeated Marco Mendicino.
Mark Arcand (right) participated in a press conference earlier Wednesday with some families of victims.
Many people across the province feel relieved now that the manhunt is over.
This is particularly the case of Darryl Burns, whose sister was killed in the tragedy. The latter also intends to organize a candlelight vigil in honor of the deceased on Wednesday evening.
Same story on the side of the Saskatoon Tribal Council.
We are relieved that Myles Sanderson has been arrested and the manhunt is over, says the head of the organization, Mark Arcand, who lost his sister and nephew in this tragedy. Now people can start to feel safe again.
“The time has come to start healing our wounds.
—Mark Arcand, Chief of the Saskatoon Tribal Council
Mark Arcand adds that the injured and loved ones of the victims will need continued support in order to get through this trauma.
Saskatchewan Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations Leader Bobby Cameron said many lives have been forever altered as a result of this tragedy.
Our Communities can now begin to heal their wounds through our culture, spirituality and other means, he wrote in a statement.
Dennis Helmuth, Mayor of Rosthern, a village located about 6 km from the scene of the arrest, says his community is breathing a little better tonight.
It's mostly a sense of relief, but I believe an incredible sadness will take its place when we take the time to realize what has happened in our province, he said.
On social media, Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe congratulated the police officers who worked day and night to arrest this dangerous criminal.
Three vigils in memory of the victims were organized by the First Nations University on the various campuses of the establishment, namely in Regina, Saskatoon and Prince Albert.
In the latter city , more than a hundred people came to meditate.
The Chief of the James Smith Cree Nation, Wally Burns, made a speech there in which he said wish all these events were just a bad dream.
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No words can express what happened. We are still in shock, said Mr. Burns. Tomorrow we begin our grieving process.
Myles Sanderson had been on a manhunt since Sunday.
He was to face counts of first degree murder, attempted murder and breaking and entering on private property. His brother, Damien Sanderson, 31, was also charged before he was found dead on Monday.
A total of 10 people were killed and 18 others were injured in this series of attacks.