Security camera images of Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, are displayed during a news conference in Surrey, British Columbia, Tuesday, July 23, 2019. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)

Ontario police investigate possible sightings of northern B.C. murder suspects

Bryer Schmegelsky and Kam McLeod remain at large after being named murder suspects on July 23

Ontario Provincial Police have assigned a team of investigators to look into a spike in tips regarding two young men wanted in multiple murders in British Columbia.

Police said Friday the reports have come in from across the province, and investigators cannot confirm at this time whether any of the sightings are, in fact, of 18-year-old Bryer Schmegelsky and 19-year-old Kam McLeod.

A few possible sightings were reported in Ontario at a time when the hunt for the suspects was focused in Manitoba, and those were dealt with by local detachments, said Staff Sgt. Carolle Dionne.

But reports have been pouring in over recent days, with more than 30 coming in over eight hours Thursday, she said. As a result, a team was created to investigate the tips in a centralized manner, including revisiting earlier reports, she said.

While some reported sightings are quickly debunked, it’s important that people send in their information, Dionne said.

“The more information (there is), it makes it easier for us to follow up on … We can’t dismiss it either if it’s vague or doesn’t have enough content but it may take us longer to filter through and try to figure out was there any merit into this tip,” she said.

“We really don’t want to discourage people from continuing to report because it could be that one tip that might be legitimate, that might be a true sighting.”

The fact that so many people are flagging possible sightings shows the case has captured public attention, she said.

“It’s telling us that people are listening to the news and people are being extra vigilant … And there’s that heightened sense of, ‘hey, we don’t know where they are, we don’t know where they may be, they could show up in my backyard.’”

Provincial police are working with the RCMP as they probe incoming reports, Dionne said.

READ MORE: Father of suspect in 3 B.C. deaths expects son will go out in ‘blaze of glory’

A manhunt spanning several provinces began last week after Schmegelsky and McLeod were named as suspects in three killings.

Vancouver researcher Leonard Dyck and Australian Lucas Fowler and his American girlfriend Chynna Deese were found dead last month in northern B.C.

Ontario Provincial Police warn the two suspects are considered dangerous and should not be approached.

Paola Loriggio, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Manitoba Manhunt

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nuxalk Nation celebrates first carpentry graduates

11 students graduated from the community’s first carpentry program

Bella Coola leave their mark on All Native Basketball Tournament as they reach Intermediate final

Nuxalk Braves bring home a strong second place finish; three individual awards for Marlon Edgar-Apps

Anahim Lake RCMP: ‘This type of crime is not normally seen in our small, tight-knit community’

Maverick West facing attempted murder charge in connection with Anahim Lake incident

All Native Basketball: Finals matchups start to take shape as title games approach

Two Prince Rupert sides in contention, while two dynasties are on the brink

CN blockade taken down as federal, provincial representatives agree to meet with hereditary chiefs

CN blockade taken down as federal, provincial representatives agree to meet with hereditary chiefs

RCMP, pipeline firm must go before Wet’suwet’en will meet with government, chief says

Federal minister in charge of Indigenous relations has proposed a meeting to diffuse blockades

A&W employees in Ladysmith get all-inclusive vacation for 10 years of service

Kelly Frenchy, Katherine Aleck, and Muriel Jack are headed on all-expenses-paid vacations

Via Rail lays off 1,000 employees temporarily as anti-pipeline blockades drag on

The Crown corporation has suspended passenger trains on its Montreal-Toronto and Ottawa-Toronto

VIDEO: Knife-wielding man arrested after barricading himself in Lower Mainland Walmart

A man had barricaded himself in the freezer section of the fish area at a Walmart in Richmond

Budget 2020: Weaver ‘delighted,’ minority B.C. NDP stable

Project spending soars along with B.C.’s capital debt

B.C. widow ‘crushed’ over stolen T-shirts meant for memorial blanket

Lori Roberts lost her fiancé one month ago Tuesday now she’s lost almost all she had left of him

Higher costs should kill Trans Mountain pipeline, federal opposition says

Most recent total was $12.6 billion, much higher than a previous $7.4-billion estimate

Trees Cannabis director fined $1.5M for selling marijuana

Fine follows provincial crackdown on popular dispensary

World Cup skier from Okanagan dies suddenly at 19

Kuroda, who made his World Cup debut earlier this year, passed away suddenly Monday night.

Most Read