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:

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

Just Posted

City approves $10M to finish Port Alberni’s wastewater treatment plant

Money won’t come from taxation, but will affect sewer user fees, says city CAO

Women assaulted in pair of weekend attacks in Port Alberni

RCMP say no reason to suspect attacks are related, but suspects still at large

Coulson Aviation CEO walks Australian crash site, pays tribute to fallen flight crew

Company’s 737 tanker crews back in the air fighting Australian bushfires

Port Alberni drag racers turn attention back to Stamp Avenue for 2020, 2021

AVDRA to ask city council for permission, road closures to run Thunder in the Valley Aug. 7-9, 2020

Port Alberni packs 500 Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes in 2019

Worldwide distribution begins for annual humanitarian aid campaign

VIDEO: Canada’s first presumptive case of coronavirus officially confirmed

Both patient and wife arrived on a China Southern Airlines flight after having been to Wuhan

First-place Canucks beat Blues 3-1 for ninth straight home win

Miller nets pair as Vancouver defeats Cup champs

Swapping grape varieties can help winemakers adapt to climate change: UBC study

Report says 56% of wine-grape-growing regions would be lost if global climate warms by 2 C

Alberta premier wants feds to approve Teck mine for benefit of First Nations

Kenney: ‘Surely [reconciliation] means saying yes to economic development for First Nations people’

Police search for man who went missing from Vernon hotel

Jay Rosenberger, 38, was last seen Friday

Filming for Resident Alien begins in Ladysmith

Aliens and excitement take over the streets of Ladysmith during new TV series

NDP suggests easing secondary housing rules for B.C. farmland

Lana Popham proposes guest homes not just for relatives

After four sexual assaults in the same B.C. park, RCMP ask women not to walk alone

Four sexual assaults took place in Glen Park over two months

Most Read