Mounties search abandoned homes in Gillam, Man. on Saturday, July 27 in the hunt for wanted fugitives Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky. Both are facing a second-degree murder charge, and are suspected in a double homicide. (Manitoba RCMP/Twitter)

RCMP search abandoned homes, work camps for B.C. murder suspects in Gillam, Man.

Military steps in to help Mounties with aerial search, while officers canvas homes in Gillam, Man.

Manitoba RCMP have searched through more than 100 abandoned houses in the remote northern town of Gillam as investigators enter the fifth day in their hunt for suspected killers Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky.

Police announced Friday that they would be spending much of the weekend going door-to-door canvassing in the town, as well as on Fox Lake Cree Nation, in hopes of generating tips and information that advance the nationwide hunt for the young Port Alberni men.

READ MORE: RCMP getting air support from military in hunt for McLeod, Schmegelsky

“In the ongoing search for the suspects, RCMP officers have started to canvass every home in Gillam and Fox Lake Cree Nation,” Manitoba RCMP tweeted Saturday afternoon. “In addition to the canvass, they are also thoroughly searching every abandoned home in the area – over 100 cleared so far.”

A Canada-wide warrant is out for McLeod and Schmegelsky’s arrests. The two men have been charged with second-degree murder in the killing of 64-year-old Leonard Dyck, whose body was found July 19 at a Highway 37 pullout in northern B.C. They remain suspects in the shooting deaths of tourist couple Chynna Dease, 24, and Lucas Fowler, 23, who were found along the Alaska Highway on July 15.

READ MORE: Bryer Schmegelsky’s mother pleads with him to ‘come home safe’

McLeod, 19, and Schmegelsky, 18, were last seen in Gillam on Monday. A burnt-out vehicle being driven by the pair was found near Fox Lake that evening, sparking a police block along the town’s sole access road.

It was initially believed that the wanted fugitives were still in the area, but investigators are now considering the possibility that someone may have inadvertently helped them flee. Until a new sighting elsewhere is confirmed, police will continue to focus their search in Gillam.

Members of the Canadian Armed Forces arrived Saturday to help Mounties search through the remote region where difficult terrain, high bush and swampy conditions have hindered search efforts. The Royal Canadian Air Force CC-130H Hercules aircraft will be assisting with an aerial search, the Department of National Defence confirmed.

Manitoba Mounties are also searching through large abandoned buildings, police said, including the Keewatinohk converter station camp that was used as a temporary work camp for Manitoba Hydro and is located roughly 90 kilometres northeast of Gillam.

Cpl. Julie Courchaine urged the public on Friday to keep a vigilant eye out for the wanted fugitives, who may have changed their appearance by now.

“Investigators continue to follow up on tips, review the physical and digital information collected, and share information with police services across Canada,” she said.

McLeod and Schmegelsky are considered armed and dangerous and may not be together. They are described as 6’4” and about 170 pounds. If spotted, do not approach them, and call 911 immediately.

Here is what we know so far:

Just Posted

ARTS AROUND: Crafters wanted for annual Mistletoe Market

The Rollin Art Centre’s annual Christmas Market is just around the corner

Alberni Charity Golf Classic donates $60K to five charities

BC Children’s Hospital, four Alberni-based groups split proceeds

Stone Poets bring global message to Char’s Landing

Modern folk trio from Vancouver creates music that matters.

The Nutcracker returns to Port Alberni

Port Alberni, Vancouver Island and professional dancers bring the holiday classic to life

Former Port Alberni grad pitches to Dragons’ Den

Justin Atterbury is the co-owner of Taynton Bay Spirits in Invermere, B.C.

VIDEO: Canadian allergists’ group wants Benadryl behind the counter due to side effects

Some doctors say the medication is over-used because of its easy availability

Sex assault charge stayed against Port Moody mayor

Rob Vagramov completed an alternative measures program, special prosecutor said

“I thought, enough is enough”: B.C. teen takes on bullies through social media

‘I thought, enough is enough. I wanted to try something to stop it.’

Audit finds Canada’s fisheries in decline and response lacks urgency

Report says 17 per cent of fish stocks are critically depleted, up from 13.4 per cent in 2018

Small group of Cherry fans protest his firing at Rogers HQ

One sign at the Toronto rally: ‘Rogers cancels Don, we cancel Rogers’

Campbell River RCMP investigating after two stabbing incidents Tuesday night

Police are treating each case separately and have one person in custody

Nearly half of B.C. drivers nervous in winter conditions: BCAA

‘Wait and see’ approach common practice for 32% of B.C. motorists

Autism support dog refused bus access for being a ‘pet’

B.C. grandmother files complaint with TransLink, calls for better awareness of service dogs

Students plan rally at B.C. education minister’s office as district strike enters third week

Saanich School District students plan to rally outside Rob Fleming’s constituency office in Victoria

Most Read