1 suspect dead, another on the run in Canada stabbing massacre: Police

·4 min read
1 suspect dead, another on the run in Canada stabbing massacre: Police

One suspect is dead and a second is still on the run following a string of stabbings that killed at least 11 people across Canada's Saskatchewan province on Sunday, police said.

As of Tuesday morning, authorities continue to search for 30-year-old suspect Myles Sanderson, who may be injured and seeking medical attention, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. He is believed to still be in the provincial capital of Regina and is considered armed and dangerous, police said.

"The public should take appropriate precautions," the Saskatchewan RCMP wrote in a Twitter post on Monday, alongside a photo of the suspect still at large. "Do not approach suspicious persons and report any information to your local police and emergencies to 911."

PHOTO: Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore speaks next to images of Damien Sanderson and Myles Sanderson during a press conference at the Royal Canadian Mounted Police 'F' Division headquarters in Regina, Saskatchewan, Sept. 4, 2022. (The Canadian Press via AP)
PHOTO: Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore speaks next to images of Damien Sanderson and Myles Sanderson during a press conference at the Royal Canadian Mounted Police 'F' Division headquarters in Regina, Saskatchewan, Sept. 4, 2022. (The Canadian Press via AP)

His brother, 31-year-old suspect Damien Sanderson, was found dead on Monday in a heavily grassed area near the stabbing sites, in proximity to a house that investigators were examining. The body had "visible injuries," which RCMP Commanding Officer Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore said "are not believed to be self-inflicted at this point." The exact cause of death was unknown.

It was the first time Canadian authorities have identified the two suspects as brothers.

The pair are accused of carrying out Sunday's deadly stabbing spree on an Indigenous community in Saskatchewan, which also left 19 people injured. The massacre occurred between the James Smith Cree Nation and in the town of Weldon, located northeast of Saskatoon, according to police.

Investigators believe some of the victims were "targeted" while others were "attacked randomly," Blackmore said.

PHOTO: A police forensics team investigates a crime scene after multiple people were killed and injured in a stabbing spree in Weldon, Saskatchewan, Sept. 4, 2022. (David Stobbe/Reuters)
PHOTO: A police forensics team investigates a crime scene after multiple people were killed and injured in a stabbing spree in Weldon, Saskatchewan, Sept. 4, 2022. (David Stobbe/Reuters)

The Saskatchewan RCMP got their first 911 call about a stabbing on the James Smith Cree Nation, about 20 miles from Weldon, around 5:40 a.m. local time on Sunday. Within minutes, police received several more calls from multiple locations. In total, victims were found at 13 different locations across the sparsely populated reserve and in the town, according to Blackmore.

A motive for the attacks remains under investigation.

Multiple alerts were sent to the cellphones of residents in the Saskatchewan region, asking them to remain indoors and to be vigilant.

"To the people of Saskatchewan and beyond -- please be assured that we are using every human, investigational and technological resource we have available to locate and arrest the persons responsible for this tragedy and to ensure your safety," Blackmore said in a statement Monday. "Hundreds of Saskatchewan RCMP staff are dedicated to this investigation."

PHOTO: Canadian police say multiple people are dead in 13 locations at two communities in Saskatchewan. (AP)
PHOTO: Canadian police say multiple people are dead in 13 locations at two communities in Saskatchewan. (AP)

The Sanderson brothers were named as suspects in the stabbings and were believed to be traveling in a black Nissan Rogue, police said.

Charges were filed and arrest warrants were issued for both suspects. Myles Sanderson is charged with three counts of first-degree murder, one count of attempted murder and one count count of breaking and entering into a residence. Damien Sanderson is charged with one count of first-degree murder, one count of attempted murder and one count of breaking and entering into a residence, according to police. More charges are expected.

Meanwhile, police in Saskatoon confirmed to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation that they have been searching for Myles Sanderson since May, when he violated parole by failing to meet with his parole officer. He was classified as "unlawfully at large," Saskatoon police told CBC.

Myles Sanderson was placed on parole after serving a nearly five-year federal sentence for assault, robbery, mischief and uttering threats, according to CBC.

PHOTO: Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore speaks while Regina Police Chief Evan Bray, left, looks on during a press conference at RCMP 'F' Division Headquarters in Regina, Saskatchewan, on Sunday, Sept. 4, 2022.  (The Canadian Press via AP)
PHOTO: Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore speaks while Regina Police Chief Evan Bray, left, looks on during a press conference at RCMP 'F' Division Headquarters in Regina, Saskatchewan, on Sunday, Sept. 4, 2022. (The Canadian Press via AP)

Marco Mendocino, who serves as Canada's minister of public safety, told reporters on Tuesday that he's concerned about what occurred in Saskatchewan and the parole board's decision to let Sanderson roam free.

"I'm extremely concerned with what occurred here. You know, [the] community is left reeling as a result of a massive number of tragedies and killings and that's fundamentally wrong," he said. "We need to be transparent with Canadians to make sure that this kind of thing never happens again. But right now, our top priority has to be to support the families."

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a statement Sunday, saying, "I am shocked and devastated by the horrific attacks today in James Smith Cree Nation and Weldon, Saskatchewan, that claimed the lives of 10 people and injured many more."

"As Canadians, we mourn with everyone affected by this tragic violence, and with the people of Saskatchewan. We also wish a full and quick recovery to those injured," he said.

Anyone with information on the case or the whereabouts of Myles Sanderson is urged to call 911 immediately.

"We are confident that someone out there knows the whereabouts of these two and has information that would be valuable to the police, and I urge you to get in touch with your local police service to let us know," Regina Police Chief Evan Bray said in a statement Monday. "There's a lot of grief, there's a lot of anxiety in our province and in our communities this morning and all day yesterday, and really I think an important step for families and communities working through this will be to bring these two safely into custody."

ABC News' Aleem Agha, Luke Barr, Guy Davies, Matt Foster and Joseph Simonetti contributed to this report.

ABC's Jim Ryan reports:

1 suspect dead, another on the run in Canada stabbing massacre: Police originally appeared on abcnews.go.com