With charges laid against two young B.C. men in connection to one murder in northern B.C., there are questions about why there are still no charges in connection to two other murders.
B.C. RCMP said Thursday its investigators are hard at work on getting those additional charges approved.
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“I know for the investigators that’s a priority for them,” spokesperson Sgt. Janelle Shoihet said. “I don’t have a timeline, but we’re working really hard. We anticipate them, but we don’t know what that looks like.”
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Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, and Kam McLeod, 19, were both charged with second-degree murder Wednesday in connection to the death of 64-year-old Vancouver resident Leonard Dyck.
The charges have resulted in a Canada-wide warrant for the pair.
Dyck’s body was found on July 19 two kilometres away from a burning red truck on Highway 37 south of Dease Lake.
The truck was later confirmed to be the one driven by Schmegelsky and McLeod, who were believed to be travelling from Port Alberni, B.C., to the Yukon for work.
Four days earlier and roughly 470 kilometres east of that crime scene, the bodies of Sydney, Australia native Lucas Fowler and Chynna Deese of Charlotte, N.C., were found on the side of Highway 97.
Schmegelsky and McLeod are also suspects in the couple’s shooting death, but no charges have yet been laid.
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Shoihet said detectives are currently compiling information for the B.C. Prosecution Service to review for potential charges.
She also pushed back against any suggestion that the delay in laying charges is due to doubt that Schmegelsky and McLeod are the suspects who should be charged in Fowler and Deese’s deaths.
“It’s the process we have to go through, and we’re working through that now,” she said. “As you can imagine, with a double homicide, we have to have all the evidence in place, and it takes some time.
“There’s a volume of information we have to go through, but hopefully it won’t be too much longer.”
The B.C. Prosecution Service declined to comment, citing the ongoing investigation.
Global News has reached out to the families of Fowler and Deese for comment.
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Shoihet said a different investigation team was responsible for securing the charges in connection to Dyck’s death.
She could not speak to how they and prosecutors arrived at the charge of second-degree murder, which suggests the killing was not premeditated.
Fowler and Deese were found near their broken-down van 20 kilometres south of Liard Hot Springs, B.C. Police confirmed that the couple were shot and the rear window of their vehicle was broken.
Their families said the couple were on a road trip through Canada. Fowler had been living in B.C. for work and Deese had travelled from North Carolina to meet him.
Manitoba RCMP believe Schmegelsky and McLeod remain in the Gillam area in the northern part of the province.
Police said Thursday there have been two confirmed sightings of the pair, most recently Monday, before the Toyota RAV4 they were driving was found burning in the area.
—With files from Kerri Breen and Maham Abedi