Suspects in three Northern B.C. deaths spotted in Manitoba

Suspects enjoy war, hunting and camouflage simulation games

PRINCE GEORGE — RCMP say two Port Alberni men who are suspects in the murders of Lucas Fowler and Chynna Deese on the Alaska Highway and the death of a man on Highway 37 near Dease Lake have now been spotted in Manitoba.

Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, had last been seen in Northern Saskatchewan driving a grey 2011 Toyota RAV 4 before moving on the the next province.

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“We now have a more recent confirmed sighting in Gillam, Manitoba,” RCMP Sgt. Janelle Shoihet said. "Our investigators are sharing information with investigators in Manitoba but confirms our belief that they were continuing to travel and the renewed importance of not focussing on one particular area but instead our efforts to locate them.”

She said Manitoba RCMP issued a social media post to ensure that Manitobans were aware and could take proper precautions.

Gillam is located 800m kilometres north of Winnipeg.

"We believe that they're likely continuing to travel but we don't have a possible destination," Sgt. Janelle Shoihet said Tuesday

Investigators have new information that leads them to believe they are suspects in all three deaths, Shoihet said. Police agencies across Canada have been notified about the two wanted men, Shoihet said.

The men are both 6-foot-4 inches tall and weigh around 169 pounds.

Anyone with information on their whereabouts is urged to call 9-1-1 immediately

Police are warning the public to not approach the pair, who are considered dangerous.

Fowler and Deese were found shot to death outside their van south of Liard Hot Springs in Northeast B.C. July 15.

McLeod and Schmegelsky are also suspects in the death of an older man whose body was found near their burning pickup truck south of Dease Lake near the Stikine River in Northwest B.C. July 19. Police are still trying to identify the man.

McLeod and Schmegelsky were originally considered missing. Police couldn't immediately say whether the two men have prior criminal records.

Even on Monday, police hadn’t ruled out a connection between the two crimes.

And, McLeod and Schmegelsky – best friends since elementary school – had left Port Alberni for Whitehorse July 12 to find work,  Schmegelsky’s grandmother, Carol Starkey, said.

If they had taken the ferry to Prince Rupert, the route to Whitehorse is up Highway 37 through Dease Lake. However, police had reports of them being seen travelling south from the Super A general store in Dease Lake at about 3:15 p.m. last Thursday.

Bryer Schmegelsky
Source: Bryer Schmegelsky via Facebook

Schmegelsky’s father, Alan Schmegelsky, said he received a message from Bryer July 12 saying he and McLeod were headed to Alberta and might be uncontactable.

Schmegelsky described his son as “a smart kid,” into computer games, curious about his ancestry and just starting to become less introverted.

Neither is violent or into drugs, he said.

He said both enjoy games simulating war that involve hunting and camouflage.

Bryer Schmegelsky
Source: Bryer Schmegelsky

McLeod’s online presence indicates an interest in the Communist Party of Canada and the Young Communist League. His little-used Facebook page features a skull with geometric designs, one half in black, white and grey, the other in blazing colours. Another picture depicts a lion with a blazing rainbow of colour for a mane.

RCMP are also investigating the disappearance of Ryan Provencher, 38, and Richard Scurr, 37, of Surrey, last seen about 12:30 p.m. on July 17 in Surrey. They were driving a 2019 white Jeep Cherokee.

 - With files from The Victoria Times Colonist

jhainsworth@glaciermedia.ca

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