Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.

Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.

VIDEO: Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder still at large from Mission Institution

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

Update:

Bellingham Police are reporting a possible sighting of a man who escaped from the Mission Institution’s minimum security unit last night.

Original story:

A man convicted of first-degree murder has escaped Mission Institution’s minimum security unit.

When prison staff were conducting the end-of-night head count at 10 p.m., they realized that Roderick Muchikekwanape was not present, Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) said in a news release.

The Mission RCMP detachment was contacted at 10:30 p.m., and issued a warrant for his arrest for being unlawfully at large, said Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP.

He said a risk assessment was conducted with CSC and the Parole Board of Canada, and there’s nothing to indicate he’s a threat to the general public.

“While we are aware that Roderick Muchikekwanape has a history of significant violence, we do not believe that he is an immediate threat to the general public,” said Berze. “If you see him, do not approach and call your local police.”

The Mission RCMP has assigned a team of five or six investigators from the serious crime unit, Berze said.

Muchikekwanape is currently serving a life sentence. In 1998, he was convicted of murdering Kimberly Clarke in Winnipeg as she was walking home from a party. Clarke was 36-years old, and a mother of three.

Clarke’s body was found floating in Red River, which passes through the center of Winnipeg. She had been sexually assaulted and battered, according to the autopsy report.

Muchikekwanape, 41, is described as six-feet tall, weighing 217 pounds, having medium complexion, and black hair and brown eyes.

CSC and RCMP officers will be investigating how Muchikekwanape was able to escape the prison, Berze said, but they are not prepared to talk about those specifics yet.

He did disclose that Muchikekwanape left the prison with a number of his personal belongings, an amount that “could fit into the size of a duffle bag,” and he was last seen in the prison at 7 p.m., Berze said.

The initial stages of the investigation involve speaking with the last CSC employees and neighbouring inmates he was in contact with, looking at CSC phone records and CCTV footage, canvassing the nearby neighbourhood, and then contacting family and friends and identifying places of interest, according to Berze.

“Avenues usually identify themselves from there,” Berze said. At this point within the detachment, it’s all hands on deck. So we have everyone on the lookout actively looking for him.”

Berze said he is not aware of Muchikekwanape being outside the prison for CSC programs.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts are asked to contact the Mission RCMP immediately.

“It’s important for the public to be diligent to be on the lookout, and to report anything at all that they may see. Any piece of information, or even suspicious activity, that they see could be helpful in locating and arresting him,” Berze said.

RELATED: Staff shortages plague Mission Institution following recovery from COVID-19 outbreak

Mission

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

Just Posted

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

The avalanche came down on the highway sometime Sunday evening (Feb. 21) (Dawson photo)
Road to Bella Coola wharf reopens after large avalanche

The road was closed after a large avalanche covered a significant portion of the highway

Jenni Mueller lives near the wharf on the other side of the avalanche. She took this photo and thinks the avalanche happened around 8 p.m. last night (February 21). (Jenni Mueller photo)
Avalanche closes road to wharf at Bella Coola

A day and night of heavy rain resulted in avalanches across the region

Fisheries and Oceans Canada released it's 2021 Pacific Herring Integrated Fisheries Management Plan Feb. 19. (File photo)
Northern herring opportunities kept to a minimum

2021 management plan caps Prince Rupert fishery at 5 per cent

Williams Lake First Nation government staff are anticipated to return to work Monday, Jan. 25. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
Court orders new hearing over Williams Lake First Nation’s century-old land dispute

A three-judge panel unanimously set aside a 2018 finding by the Specific Claims Tribunal

Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
456 new COVID-19 cases in B.C., 2 deaths

Since January 2020, 78,278 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in B.C.

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Vaccinating essential workers before seniors in B.C. could save lives: experts

A new study says the switch could also save up to $230 million in provincial health-care costs

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead in B.C.

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Majority of Canadians think it’s high time to decriminalize illicit drugs: poll

More than two-times the B.C. residents know someone who died from an overdose compared to rest of Canada

Photograph By @KAYLAXANDERSON
VIDEO: Lynx grabs lunch in Kamloops

A lynx surprises a group of ducks and picks one off for lunch

(Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. residents can reserve provincial camp sites starting March 8

B.C. residents get priority access to camping reservations in province

Two women were arrested in Nanaimo for refusing to wear masks and causing disturbance on a BC Ferries vessel. (File photo)
B.C. ferry passengers arrested and fined for disturbance, refusing to wear masks

Police said woman threatened their pensions in Feb. 21 incident aboard Nanaimo-bound boat

Most Read