A series of knife attacks in Saskatchewan, Canada left at least 10 people dead and 15 injured on Sunday, September 4, 2022 in the James Smith Cree Nation and the village of Weldon, located about 200 kilometers northeast of Saskatoon.
A series of knife attacks
On Sunday, September 4, 2022 at 5:40 local time (1:40 pm Paris time), the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in Saskatchewan received a call about a knife attack on the James Smith Cree Nation. Minutes later, authorities received several calls reporting multiple attacks in the community.
The RCMP immediately notified the population, calling on them to stay in a safe area. An alert will be extended a few hours later to the entire province, then to neighboring provinces, Manitoba and Alberta. Because currently, the two suspects are angry with another community.
Identified as Damien Sanderson and Miles Sanderson, the two suspects left James Smith’s Cree Nation driving a black Nissan Rogue and headed southwest. About thirty kilometers further, they stopped at Weldon, a small village with about 200 inhabitants. The two attackers caused another casualty by attacking people randomly, the authorities said. “The first indications are that some victims were randomly attacked »warned the RCMP.
After Weldon, the two suspects were seen two hours later in Regina, the provincial capital, located 300 kilometers to the south. Since then, the two men have not seen each other.
By midday Sunday, authorities reported at least 10 dead and 15 injured taken to hospital after a series of attacks in 13 different locations.
Saskatchewan’s health authority told theAFP activated emergency protocols to deal with “Many patients” in a state “critical”.
The two suspects ran away
Since Sunday, the photos of Damien Sanderson and Myles Sanderson, two dark-haired men with dark eyes aged 30 and 31, have made headlines and circulated on television channels. Little information has been announced on the profile of the two men, even confirming a possible parental link, regarding the same last name.
Myles Sanderson is wanted on a federal arrest warrant because “illegal majority”according to the Saskatoon Crime Stoppers program.
The manhunt is still going on. Monday morning (3:30 p.m. Paris), the two suspects are still at large, “despite the overnight efforts of the Regina police and RCMP”said the chief of police in the provincial capital, Evan Bray.
The motives of the killers
There is little information to determine the motives of these attacks. According to Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore, Commanding Officer of the Saskatchewan RCMP, “Some victims of the attacks were targeted, while others were allegedly attacked randomly”.
While police declined to speculate on a motive for the attacks, Indigenous leaders said the attacks may be drug-related, reports said. The Telegraph and Radio Canada . “This is the destruction we face when illegal and harmful drugs invade our communities”said Bobby Cameron, leader of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN), which represents 74 First Nations in Saskatchewan.
Canada to mourn
This series of attacks constitutes one of the bloodiest aggressions in the country’s history. Flags at the Legislative Palace and other government buildings were lowered for ten days, a day of remembrance for each victim, also reported Radio Canada.
“Today’s attacks in Saskatchewan are horrific and heartbreaking. I think of people who have lost loved ones and those who have been hurt.Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wrote on Twitter.
Saskatchewan Leader Scott Moe said “There are no words to describe the pain and loss caused by this senseless violence”.
“Together, as a Nation, we mourn with the people of the James Smith Cree Nation and we pray that those injured will recover as soon as possible”also reacted to the head of FSIN, Bobby Cameron, in a press release.