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

Just Posted

Suds lovers have new choice: Lucky Lager or Lucky lather

Metchosin Soap Works puts out olive oil soap infused with the brew synonymous with Vancouver Island

New Sonic the Hedgehog trailer shows off Ladysmith and new character animation

Vancouver Island-filmed movie will hit theatres on Feb. 14

Climate change protest takes place in Victoria during rush hour

Extinction Rebellion group targets local media with protest on Douglas Street

No danger to Quadra Island residents, says representative for barge parent company

Compressed CO2, corrosion inhibitor among cargo of grounded barge on Quadra Island

Thousands of cigarette butts collected and recycled from downtown Victoria

Canisters placed throughout the downtown core have made an impact on local litter

Man and dog safe as crews handle house fire in Nanaimo’s Old City Quarter

Firefighters were called to 400 block of Machleary Street at 11:30 p.m. Tuesday

Jagmeet Singh says he’ll vote against throne speech if NDP requests not met

Singh is to meet with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday

Community uses loophole to paint 16 rainbow crosswalks after B.C. council says no

So far 11 rainbows are painted and five planned, all since council denied the first proposal in September

Workers’ camp at LNG facility in Kitimat takes shape

Extensive worker camp now being assembled

238 and counting: Vancouver gelato shop sets Guinness World record for most flavours

Vince Misceo has come up with 588 different flavours over the decades

Killer who fled to Taiwan day after shooting B.C. man over $80 sentenced 13 years later

The sentence comes 13 years after Shaoxin Zhang, 19, was killed in a Burnaby parking lot

North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP seek witnesses in fatal crash

Deceased a man in his mid-20s, identity will not be released

UVic conference explores healthy ways to express masculinity

ReImagining Masculinity conference Nov. 16 hopes to cultivate healthy, non-violent conversations

Grade 12 students ‘will not lose their graduation year:’ SD63 superintendent

Parents, students concerned about educational impact of CUPE 441 strike

Most Read