• Myles Sanderson was arrested on Wednesday near Rosthern, RCMP said
The second man wanted in a grisly stabbing spree on an indigenous reservation in Canada has been taken into custody after a four day manhunt.
Myles Sanderson, who was the target of a massive manhunt across the Saskatchewan province, was apprehended on Wednesday afternoon near Rosthern, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
‘There is no longer a risk to public safety relating to this investigation. Updates to come,’ an RCMP spokesperson said in a statement.
Sanderson, 30, had been the only remaining suspect at large in the Sunday massacre left 10 dead and 18 injured on the James Smith Cree Nation reservation.
Sanderson’s brother Damien – his alleged accomplice in the massacre – was found dead Monday, of injuries cops say were likely not self-inflicted.
The RCMP said they were looking into whether Damien may have been killed by his brother.
‘It is an investigative avenue that we are following up on, but we can’t say that definitively at this point’ an RCMP spokesperson said.
All ten victims of the grisly stabbing spree on an indigenous reservation in Canada have been identified.
The victims were Lana Head, 49, a mother of two; Christian Head, 54; Gregory Burns, 28; Gregory’s aunt Gloria Lydia Burns, 61, an addictions counsellor who was killed responding to an emergency stabbing call; Gloria’s sister-in-law Bonnie Burns, 48; Thomas Burns, 23; Carol Burns, 46; Earl Burns, a Canadian military veteran; Robert Sanderson, 49; and Wesley Patterson, 77.
Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore speaks next to images of Damien Sanderson and Myles Sanderson during a press conference at the Royal Canadian Mounted Police “F” Division
The attacks were among the deadliest in Canada’s modern history – and some of the victims appeared to have been targeted, while others were apparently random.
A mother of two, a 77-year-old widower, a first responder and a 14-year-old boy were the initial victims identified.
The siblings – who were described as armed and dangerous – are the chief suspects in attacks on 29 people in 13 different locations on the James Smith Cree Nation on Sunday afternoon.
Myles Sanderson has been wanted since May when he stopped going to court mandated visits with his parole officer.
He disappeared while out on parole on a five year sentence for assault, robbery, mischief and making threats, according to Regina police chief, Evan Bray.
He was charged with three counts of murder in the first degree, one count of attempted murder and one count of breaking and entering.
Damien Sanderson was previously charged with one count of murder in the first degree, one count of attempted murder and one count of breaking and entering. But police confirmed that he’s now been found dead.
‘We know. We are confident that someone out there knows the whereabouts of these two and has information that would be valuable to the police,’ said Bray. ‘I urge you to get in touch with your local police service.’
The brothers fled in a black Nissan Rogue SUV which was spotted 200 miles south of the indigenous reserve.
‘This is my brothers’ vehicle that they took when they entered our home this morning in James Smith Cree Nation,’ a woman posted on Facebook, according to SkyNews Canada.
‘We (can’t) care less about the vehicle but let these monsters be caught.’
The brothers are believed to have stabbed the victims across 13 sites in the indigenous reserve and in the nearby village of Weldon, northeast of the city of Saskatoon.
A police alert and search expanded from Saskatchewan to include neighboring Manitoba and Alberta provinces – a vast region half the size of Europe.
The chief of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations suggested the stabbings could be drug-related, as it emerged that Myles was listed as ‘unlawfully at large’ by police in May.
The devastated community named Lana Head, the mother of two daughters, as one of the victims of the attack and said she died alongside her partner, who has not been identified.
Wes Petterson, a 77-year-old widower, was the second victim to be named by locals.
Following the frenzied stabbing, the armed suspects reportedly fled the scene in the Nissan which was since spotted in Regina, a city about 208 miles south of the communities where the stabbings occurred, police said.
Blackmore, the Assistant Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, said some of the victims appear to have been targeted by the suspects – but others appear to have been attacked at random.
Canadian cops hunt two suspects after ten dead in stabbings
The first stabbings were reported at 5.40am in James Smith Cree Nation, a sparsely populated indigenous community with a population of about 3,400 people largely engaged in farming, hunting and fishing.
Within three hours of the stabbings, police issued a province-wide dangerous persons alert. By Sunday afternoon, similar alerts were also issued in Saskatchewan’s neighboring provinces Alberta and Manitoba.
The elected leaders of the three communities that make up the James Smith Cree Nation, including the Chakastaypasin Band and the Peter Chapman Band, declared a local state of emergency and opened up two emergency operations centers.
September 4, 5.40am: Police receive report of a stabbing in James Smith Cree Nation
7.12am: Police urge public to find shelter and issue Dangerous Persons Alert
7.57am: Police reveal names and pictures of two suspects
12.07pm: Suspected vehicle is spotted in Regina
3.45pm: Police announce 10 have been killed and 15 injured across 13 locations
September 5, 11.45am: Injuries rise to 19
3.50pm: Body of Damien Sanderson found at James Smith Cree Nation
September 6: Police converge with guns drawn on a home in the reservation after reports Myles was seen in the area. Authorities also issued a shelter-in-place order to surrounding community
Chief Bobby Cameron of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations, a group which represents 74 First Nations in the state of Saskatchewan, suggested the stabbings were drug-related.
‘This is the destruction we face when harmful illegal drugs invade our communities, and we demand all authorities to take direction from the Chiefs and Councils and their membership to create safer and healthier communities for our people,’ Cameron said.
The former partner of Lana Head, who was killed in the attack, also suggested the attack was linked to drugs and alcohol.
Michael Brett Burns, who has two daughters with Head, told the Aboriginal People’s Television Network: ‘It’s sick how jail time, drugs and alcohol can destroy many lives.
‘I’m hurt for all this loss.’
Burns earlier paid tribute to his ex-partner, writing on Facebook: ‘You will be missed dearly Lana. Thank you for beautiful daughters and granddaughters.’
A friend also paid tribute to Head, writing on Facebook: ‘I love you and say prayers for your children, grandchildren, your family. I am going to miss your sweet hello’s and messages. I will forever cherish your sweet demeanor and caring ways.’
Ruby Works said the second named victim, Wes Petterson, was like an uncle to her.
‘I collapsed and hit the ground. I’ve known him since I was just a little girl,’ she said, describing the moment she heard the news.
She said he loved his cats, was proud of his homemade Saskatoon berry jam and frequently helped out his neighbors.
‘He didn’t do anything. He didn’t deserve this. He was a good, kind hearted man,’ said Works.
Weldon resident Robert Rush described Petterson as a gentle, widowed man in his 70s. ‘He wouldn’t hurt a fly,’ he said.
Rush said Petterson’s adult grandson was in the basement at the time of the stabbing and phoned police.
Chakastaypasin Chief Calvin Sanderson – who is not related to the suspects – said everyone’s been affected by the tragic events.
‘They were our relatives, friends,’ Sanderson said of the victims. ‘It’s pretty horrific.’
Indigenous people account for less than five per cent of Canada’s population of about 38 million and suffer from higher levels of poverty, unemployment and a lower life expectancy than other Canadians.
Justin Trudeau, Canada’s prime minister, tweeted: ‘The attacks in Saskatchewan today are horrific and heartbreaking. I’m thinking of those who have lost a loved one and of those who were injured.
‘We are closely monitoring the situation, and urge everyone to follow updates from local authorities,’ he continued.
‘Thank you to all the brave first responders for their efforts on the ground.’
The deadliest gun rampage in Canadian history occurred in 2020 when a man disguised as a police officer shot people in their homes and set fires across the province of Nova Scotia, killing 22 people.
A man used a van to kill 10 pedestrians in Toronto in 2019. But mass killings are less common in Canada than in the United States.
• A police forensics team investigates a crime scene following the horrific killing spree
• A police officer walks through the scene of a stabbing in Weldon, Saskatchewan
• A police forensics team investigates a crime scene after multiple people were killed and injured in a stabbing spree in Weldon, Saskatchewan
• Investigators gather in front of a table near the scene of stabbing in Weldon, Saskatchewan
Deadly mass stabbings are more rare than mass shootings but have happened around the world.
In 2014, 29 people were slashed and stabbed to death at a train station in China’s southwestern city of Kunming.
In 2016, a mass stabbing at a facility for the mentally disabled in Sagamihara, Japan, left 19 people dead.
A year later, three men killed eight people in a vehicle and stabbing attack at London Bridge. (Daily Mail)
• Captain Ibrahim Traoré head of Burkina Faso junta
• Junta says its intelligence and security services have foiled a coup attempt
An attempted coup in Burkina Faso was thwarted on Tuesday by security and intelligence services, the ruling junta announced on Wednesday.
It did not provide specifics or the name of the coup plotters, but said arrests have been made, while manhunt has begun for other collaborators.
In a statement it said officers and others had planned to destabilise the country with “the dark intention of attacking the institutions of the Republic and plunging our country in chaos.”
“Investigations will help unmask the instigators of this plot,” the junta said.
The junta on Monday suspended French news magazine Jeune Afrique for publishing “untruthful” articles that reported tension and discontent within Burkina Faso’s armed forces.
The next day thousands of pro-junta demonstrators took to the streets of the capital Ouagadougou and elsewhere to show their support, citing rumours of a brewing mutiny against the authorities.
The junta came to power after two military coups last year, triggered in part by worsening insurgency by armed groups linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State that has destabilised Burkina Faso and its neighbours in West Africa’s Sahel region.
Over 50 Burkinabe soldiers and volunteer fighters were killed in clashes with militants in early September – the heaviest losses in months.
A patient suffering from an eye infection gets examined by a doctor at a hospital in Lahore on September 27, 2023. More than 56,000 Pakistan schools will shut for the remainder of the week in a bid to curb a mass outbreak of a contagious eye virus, officials said on September 27. – AFP photo.
More than 56,000 Pakistan schools will shut for the rest of the week in a bid to curb a mass outbreak of a contagious eye virus, officials said Wednesday.
Millions of students will stay home from tomorrow after Punjab, Pakistan’s most populous province, announced blanket closures having recorded 357,000 conjunctivitis cases since the start of the year.
The fast-spreading eye infection causes redness, itchiness and discharge from the eyes and contamination can spread through hand contact, as well as coughing and sneezing.
“The closure has been announced as a proactive measure to give maximum protection to students against the infection,” Punjab Education Department spokesman Zulfiqar Ali told AFP.
There are 127,000,000 residents in eastern Punjab province and 56,000 state schools, as well as thousands of independent schools also subject to the shutdown.
“We hope this will break the cycle of the infection in the province,” Ali said.
The United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence is offering soldiers to support armed police in London after dozens of police officers stood down from firearms duties, BBC reports.
More than 100 officers have turned in permits allowing them to carry weapons, a source told the BBC, in support of a fellow officer who has been charged with murder over the fatal shooting of a young Black man, Chris Kaba.
The officer, named only as NX121, who appeared in court last week, has been charged over the death of Chris Kaba in September 2022.
Kaba died hours after he was struck by a single gunshot fired into the vehicle he was driving in the Streatham area of South London.
It later emerged that the Audi Mr Kaba was driving, which did not belong to him, had been linked by police to a gun incident the day before.
His death prompted a number of protests and renewed allegations of racism within the force.
The Ministry of Defence said it received a request, known as Military Aid to the Civil Authorities, from the Home Office to “provide routine counter-terrorism contingency support to the Metropolitan Police, should it be needed”.
A MACA is offered to the police or the NHS in emergency situations. The military helped medical staff in the Covid pandemic and covered for striking border staff and paramedics last year.
The Met said it was a “contingency option” that would only be used “in specific circumstances and where an appropriate policing response was not available”.
Military staff would not be used “in a routine policing capacity”, it added.
On Saturday, the Met said its own officers still make up the vast majority of armed police in the capital but they were being supported by a limited number of firearms officers from neighbouring forces.
Announcing the review, Home Secretary Suella Braverman said the public “depend on our brave firearms officers to protect us”.
“In the interest of public safety they have to make split-second decisions under extraordinary pressures.”
She said that officers have her “full backing”.
“I will do everything in my power to support them,” she added.
In his letter to the home secretary, the Met Police commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley, said that a system where officers are investigated for “safely pursuing suspects” should not have been allowed to develop.
Sir Mark said he would “make no comment” on any ongoing legal matters, but “the issues raised in this letter go back further”.
He said firearms officers are concerned that they will face years of legal proceedings, “even if they stick to the tactics and training they have been given”.
“Officers need sufficient legal protection to enable them to do their job and keep the public safe, and the confidence that it will be applied consistently and without fear or favour,” he wrote.
But in instances where officers act improperly, Sir Mark said the system “needs to move swiftly” rather than “tying itself in knots pursuing good officers through multiple legal processes”.