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No remorse, more murders planned: RCMP on B.C. homicides that sparked national manhunt

Last Updated Sep 27, 2019 at 7:18 pm EST

FILE - Kam McLeod, left, and Bryer Schmegelsky are seen here in handout images from the RCMP. (Source: RCMP)
Summary

The report released Friday said McLeod shot Schmegelsky before turning the gun on himself


Six videos made before their deaths won't be released, but describe their plans to escape to Europe or Africa


SURREY, B.C. —Bryer Schmegelsky and Kam McLeod, the focus of a nationwide manhunt this summer after the deaths of three people in northern B.C., planned to kill more people before killing themselves.

New details from the BC RCMP say the two expressed no remorse for their actions, and were seeking notoriety. Six videos made before their deaths won’t be released to the public, but include confessions and describe their plans to escape to Europe or Africa.

The investigative findings were released by the RCMP on Friday, more than seven weeks after the bodies of the two teenage suspects were found in the wilderness of northern Manitoba.

Assistant Commissioner Kevin Hackett said at a news conference that the videos, taken on a waterproof camera, show the two were remorseless and cold after their crimes of “opportunity.”

And, he said while the videos contain confessions, they do not reveal a motive.

“We have no evidence that leads us to identify what the motive was, if in fact there was a motive. It’s gone with the accused.”

Schmegelsky, who was 18, and 19-year-old McLeod were the subject of a two-week search that spanned Western Canada.

Before their deaths, the teens were charged with the murder of Leonard Dyck, a University of British Columbia botany lecturer, and were also suspects in the deaths of American Chynna Deese and her Australian boyfriend Lucas Fowler.

The young men had initially been considered missing persons when a truck and camper they were driving was found burned a few kilometres from where Dyck’s body was discovered at a highway pullout on July 15.

Investigators say Dyck is believed to have died from a single gunshot wound, while Deese and Fowler died of multiple gunshot wounds, mainly from behind.

The manhunt began July 23 when police announced Schmegelsky and McLeod were suspects in the deaths. They were tracked to Gillam, Man., where Dyck’s Toyota Rav 4 was found burned. Officers converged on the area to begin a search.

Police used drones, dogs and even had help from the Canadian Armed Forces to scour the remote area.

The search was scaled back July 31 and a few days later a damaged rowboat was found in the Nelson River. A search of the river turned up little of interest, police said, and the boat turned out to be unconnected to the investigation.

One of the videos revealed they had planned to hijack a boat on the shores of Hudson Bay and make their way to Europe or Africa, but decided to kill themselves after realizing the water was running too fast and they wouldn’t survive the journey.

On Aug. 6, police said some items linked to Schmegelsky and McLeod were found on the river’s shore. Their bodies were discovered the next day, about a kilometre from where police found the items.

McLeod had shot Schmegelsky before turning the gun on himself, fulfilling their “suicide pact,” police said.

Two firearms were found with the dead men. In a final video, the RCMP says they stated their last wishes, including a desire to be cremated.

The pair had taken the camera from Dyck’s belongings, and police say it was found with their bodies. The videos will not be released, as police say they fear influencing “like-minded” individuals.