Stabbing Suspect Not Hiding at James Smith Cree Nation, Police Say as Search Continues

Stabbing Suspect Not Hiding at James Smith Cree Nation, Police Say as Search Continues
In this image taken from video, Canadian law enforcement personnel surrounded a residence on the James Smith Cree First Nation reservation in Saskatchewan on Sept. 6, 2022, as they search for a suspect in a series of stabbings. (AP Photo/Robert Bumsted)
Andrew Chen

Police say the surviving suspect of the mass stabbing on a Saskatchewan First Nation on Sept. 4 wasn’t hiding in the community, after looking into reports of possible sightings of the man earlier on Sept. 6.

“After further investigation into the reports of possible sightings of Myles Sanderson on the James Smith Cree Nation, the RCMP has determined that he is not located in the community. The RCMP continues to search for Myles Sanderson,” RCMP said in a Twitter post.

“As the whereabouts of Myles Sanderson remain unknown, the emergency alert is active for the entire province and we continue to urge the public to take appropriate precautions.”

The police had previously sent out warning notices through Saskatchewan’s emergency alert system, urging the public in the area to avoid contact with the suspect.

The mass killings on Sept. 4 left 10 people dead and 18 injured. The police believe some of the victims were targeted, while others were chosen randomly.

Myles Sanderson, 30, is one of the two suspects in the stabbing spree that occurred on the First Nation and the nearby village of Weldon, northeast of Saskatoon. His 31-year-old brother, Damien Sanderson, was also a suspect.

On Sept. 5, the police said Damien Sanderson was found dead in a grassy area on the James Smith Cree Nation, marking the 11th fatality in the incident.
Police previously said Myles Sanderson could be in Regina and may be injured.

Suspect Recently Released

Myles Sanderson, who has a long history of alcohol and substance abuse and associations with gang members, pimps, and drug dealers, was granted statutory release just seven months before the mass killing in Saskatchewan, according to documents from the Parole Board of Canada obtained by The Canadian Press.

The documents, dated February this year, show that Sanderson had received statutory release from prison in August 2021, but the board revoked it about four months later, saying he failed to communicate with his parole supervisor.

He was serving his first federal sentence of four years, four months, and 19 days for a slew of offences including assault, assault with a weapon, assaulting a peace officer, and robbery. In total, he has 59 criminal convictions, the document said.

The parole board decided in February to reinstate Sanderson’s statutory release with a reprimand, saying that during his time in prison, he had "participated in programming and cultural activities, and engaged with elders,” and that any potential risk would be manageable as long as he remained sober.

The Canadian Press contributed to this report.