Kam McLeod, right, and Bryer Schmegelsky. (Police handouts)

RCMP confirm bodies found in Manitoba were B.C. fugitives

The medical examiner says Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky had shot themselves

The RCMP confirmed on Monday the two bodies found in northern Manitoba last week belong to the two young men who triggered a nation-wide manhunt, and that they had committed suicide.

“The RCMP can also confirm that the two died in what appears to be suicides by gunfire,” said BC RCMP spokesperson Dawn Roberts in a news release, following autopsies by the medical examiner in Manitoba.

Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, both of Port Alberni, had been on the run after they were declared suspects in the deaths of 64-year-old Leonard Dyck, a botany lecturer at UBC, and tourist couple Chynna Deese, 24, of North Carolina, and Lucas Fowler, 24, of Australia.

Two guns were found with the bodies, Roberts added. Forensic analysis is underway to confirm whether they’re the same weapons used in the northern B.C. killings.

Dyck’s body was discovered near a highway pullout near Dease Lake on July 19, close to a torched vehicle that police said McLeod and Schmegelsky had been driving. Their families said they left Port Alberni to look for work in the Yukon. The pair had been charged with second-degree murder in Dyck’s death.

Deese and Fowler were found shot to death on Highway 97 near Liard Hot Springs on July 15.

The fugitives had been dead for multiple days by the time they were found, Roberts said, but the exact time of death is not clear. It does appear, however, that they had been alive for a few days since the last confirmed sighting of them near Gillam, Man., on July 22.

READ MORE: B.C. murder suspect’s father reveals details of troubled life in book

Next of kin have been notified and offered support, she said.

Port Alberni Mayor Sharie Minions said Monday she hoped the autopsy results and other information released by RCMP would answer some of the questions facing families struck by the tragedy.

“There may never be enough information to adequately answer all of their questions, but our council remains committed to supporting the RCMP as they complete their investigation into what led to this tragic series of events,” she said.

The RCMP have finished their search of the area where the bodies were discovered on Aug. 7, about eight kilometres from where Dyck’s burnt-out Toyota RAV4 was found on July 22.

RELATED: Motive will be ‘extremely difficult’ to determine in northern B.C. deaths, RCMP say

Mounties are now processing all items found in Manitoba, and promise to provide the families, and then the public, with their findings in the next few weeks.

– With a file from The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Manitoba Manhunt

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

City of Port Alberni receives $2M from community forest

AVCF hands over largest dividend cheque ever after successful year in 2019

Indigenous man behind complaint of BC Transplant’s alcohol abstinence policy has died

David Dennis, who is Nuu-chah-nulth, argued that six-month sobriety policy is a ‘lethal form of racism’

UPDATE: More details released on search for missing Vancouver Island hiker

Searchers scouring Strathcona Park near Gold River for experienced 65-year-old on 40-kilometre trek

ARTS AROUND: Alberni Valley artists come together at Rollin Art Centre

New exhibit features First Nations paintings and carvings

West Coast Hockey Prep Camp returns to Port Alberni, a little smaller

Prep camp owners rolling with COVID-19 changes, including smaller classes

Horrifying video shows near head-on collision on Trans Canada

The video was captured on dash cam along Highway 1

UPDATE: Vancouver Island skydiving community mourns loss of one of its own

James Smith, 34, of Victoria, dies in Nanoose Bay incident

Elizabeth May endorses Furstenau in BC Greens race

Former federal party leader backs Cowichan Valley MLA

Fraser Valley woman complains of violent RCMP takedown during wellness check

Mounties respond that she was not co-operating during Mental Health Act apprehension

B.C. sees 12 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths

Three outbreaks exist in health-care settings

Lost dog swims Columbia River multiple times searching for home

The dog was missing from his Castlegar home for three days.

COVID-19: B.C. promotes video-activated services card

Mobile app allows easier video identity verification

ICBC to resume road tests in July with priority for rebookings, health-care workers

Tests have been on hold for four months due to COVID-19

Would you take a COVID-19 vaccine? Poll suggests most Canadians say yes

75 per cent of Canadians would agree to take a novel coronavirus vaccine

Most Read