EDITOR’S NOTE: This story originally identified the teen who died as Rodrica Ribbonlake, based on an RCMP news release. RCMP later said the name of the teen is actually Roderica Ribbonleg and the story has been updated accordingly.
RCMP said Wednesday that human remains found earlier this week in a forested area near John D’Or Prairie, Alta., are those of a 15-year-old girl who was last seen in that community on July 5.
“An autopsy was completed at the Edmonton Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, which confirmed the identity of the human remains as those of missing 15-year-old Roderica Ribbonleg of Little Red River Cree Nation,” police said in a news release.
Police added that the RCMP Major Crimes Unit’s investigation into the death, which has been deemed suspicious, is ongoing.
“The Fort Vermilion RCMP would like to thank the Little Red River Cree Nation, inclusive of the areas of John D’Or Prairie, Garden River and Fox Lake, for their efforts in searching for Roderica as they were instrumental in locating her,” police said.
“The RCMP would also like to acknowledge their assistance in the initial stages in this investigation and the communities’ patience during lockdowns that provided invaluable assistance so that the RCMP could conduct their investigation.”
Community members had initiated a search for the missing girl and then came across clothing near John D’Or Prairie on Sunday that eventually led to the grisly discovery.
On Monday, the Little Red River Cree Nation ordered lockdowns of both John D’Or Prairie and Garden River to assist police with their investigation. The lockdowns were lifted on Tuesday afternoon.
The community of John D’Or Prairie is located about 750 kilometres north of Edmonton.
Anyone with information that could help the investigation is asked to call the Fort Vermilion RCMP detachment at 780-927-3258 or their local police department.
Tips can also be anonymously submitted by phoning Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or contacting them online.