A suspect in one of Canada’s bloodiest massacres has been found dead, while his brother and another suspect may have been injured but remain at large, according to Canadian police on Monday.
Damien Sanderson, 31, was found near where 10 people were stabbed to death and 18 were injured early Sunday in at least 13 locations in an Indigenous community in Saskatchewan, according to Regina Police Chief Evan Bray.
“His body was discovered outside in a heavily grassed area near a house that was being investigated.” We can confirm that he has visible wounds. “It is not believed that these injuries were self-inflicted,” said Rhonda Blackmore, assistant commissioner in charge of the Saskatchewan Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
She also stated that the circumstances surrounding Damien Sanderson’s death are still unknown. Myles Sanderson, 30, is believed to be in Regina, Saskatchewan’s capital, according to Bray.
Sanderson may seek medical attention, according to Blackmore, but “even if he is injured, it does not mean he is not still dangerous.”
The search for the brothers was underway across three Canadian provinces on Monday, as the number of people injured in a series of stabbing attacks in and around the James Smith Cree Nation rose to 18.
The suspects were last seen driving a black Nissan Rogue in Regina, 200 miles south of the attacks. Regina is about 100 miles north of the Montana border, and border officials in the United States have been notified.
Mass murders are less common in Canada than they are in the United States.
In 2020, a man dressed as a police officer shot people in their homes and set fires across the province of Nova Scotia, killing 22 people. Police shot and killed the 51-year-old man.
A man used a van to kill ten pedestrians in Toronto in 2019.
Emergency calls began arriving at dispatchers around 5:40 a.m. Sunday and continued throughout the day. An alert that suspects were wanted was issued in Saskatchewan around 7 a.m., and it was later extended to Manitoba and Alberta. One eyewitness, who lost family members, described seeing people with bloody wounds scattered throughout the Indigenous reserve.
Doreen Lees, 89, said she and her daughter were on their deck early Sunday morning when they saw one of the suspects. A car sped down their street, and a man approached them, saying he was hurt and needed assistance.
Police in Saskatoon say they’ve been looking for Myles Sanderson since May, when he stopped meeting with his parole officer and was declared “unlawfully at large.” Sanderson was sentenced to nearly five years in prison for assault, robbery, mischief, and uttering threats, according to police in Canada. He vanished shortly after being released on parole.
In the attacks, both men faced at least one count of murder and attempted murder, with additional charges expected. Bray previously stated that he is confident that someone in the community knows where the men are or has information that could lead to their capture. And locating them, he believes, will be an important first step toward assuaging public concerns throughout the region.
According to Blackmore of the RCMP, there was no motive for the attacks. The tragedy, according to Chief Bobby Cameron of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations, “is the destruction we face when harmful illegal drugs invade our communities.” Cameron urged everyone to work together to “create safer and healthier communities for our people.”
Lana Head, one of those who died, was the former partner of Michael Brett Burns and the mother of two daughters.
According to Blackmore, some of the victims were most likely targeted by the suspects, while others were attacked at random.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered his condolences to the victims of the attacks. He also urged local residents to remain calm. “Today’s attacks in Saskatchewan are horrific and heartbreaking,” Trudeau said on Twitter. “I’m thinking of those who have lost loved ones as well as those who have been injured.”
In a statement, the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations said it “sends our deepest condolences and offers a message of solidarity with the people of James Smith Cree Nation following the unspeakable violence that claimed the lives of innocent people.” “Our hearts go out to everyone who has been affected.”