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10 killed in Canada stabbings

Police were investigating 13 crime scenes and believed that the suspects had targeted some victims while others were attacked randomly
Representational image.
Representational image.
File Photo

Austin Ramzy   |   New York   |   Published 06.09.22, 12:50 AM

A manhunt stretched into Monday in the province of Saskatchewan for two men suspected of a brutal stabbing spree early on Sunday that killed 10 people and injured at least 15 in one of the province’s worst-ever cases of mass violence.

Canadian authorities told residents in the James Smith Cree Nation and the nearby village of Weldon to shelter at home as they expanded the search nearly 300km south to Regina, the capital of the province. Police were investigating 13 crime scenes and believed that the suspects had targeted some victims while others were attacked randomly.

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The first stabbing was reported at 5.40am on Sunday, followed minutes later by calls from nearby locations. At 7.14am the Royal Canadian Mounted Police sent out a dangerous person alert for two men who were considered “armed and dangerous” and were later identified as Damien Sanderson and Myles Sanderson.

The men were believed to be travelling in a black Nissan Rogue, according to authorities, who said a driver had spotted the vehicle at 11.45am in Regina. A dangerous person alert was expanded in the afternoon to the provinces of Manitoba and Alberta. But the authorities cautioned that the men may have changed their vehicle, and their direction of travel was unknown.

Evan Bray, the Regina police chief, said in a video posted on Sunday night on Twitter that the men “are likely” in the city, without offering details of how the police reached that conclusion. He reassured residents of Regina, a city of about 226,000 people, that the police had dedicated “a lot of resources” to find the men and asked residents to provide any relevant information to the police.

“The public is often the key to helping us resolve these situations quickly,” he said. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was “shocked and devastated by the horrific attacks”. “As Canadians, we mourn with everyone affected by this tragic violence,” he added. Rhonda Blackmore, a commander with the Saskatchewan Royal Canadian Mounted Police, said at a news conference on Sunday that it “would be extremely difficult at this point in time” to speak to a motive in the attacks. “

If Damien and Myles are listening or receive this information, I would ask that they turn themselves into police immediately,” she added, addressing the two wanted men directly. The two men sought in the stabbing attacks that began in the James Smith Cree Nation remain at large and “are likely” in Regina, the city’s police chief, Evan Bray, said in a video posted on Twitter late on Sunday night.

Chief Bray said he wanted to offer “a quick update” on what he called an “unfolding situation” in the area near the Indigenous reserve in Saskatchewan, telling residents that the Regina Police Service and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police would work through the night “until we locate and arrest these two suspects”.

“We still believe these suspects are likely in the city of Regina and as such we have a lot of resources that are dedicated to this,” he said in the message posted at 8:08 p.m. local time, more than 12 hours after the first attack was reported to have happened in predawn hours.

The video statement was also published by the verified Twitter account of the Regina Police, where an officer who answered the phone confirmed that it had been issued by the police chief. Chief Bray said he wanted to reassure residents of Regina, a city of about 226,000 people, that the authorities were continuing to pursue the two men believed to have committed the stabbings, even if there are no immediate updates on the case. 

“The public is often the key to helping us resolve these situations quickly,” he said, adding that it could be “the missing piece of information we need.” Chief Bray did not elaborate on why the authorities believe that the suspects are in the city of Regina, which is more than 300km south of the James Smith Cree Nation.

(New York Times News Service)



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