Saskatoon mother who was reported missing facing parental abduction charge: police

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Details continue to unravel regarding the discovery of a 48-year-old woman and her 7-year-old son in Oregon two weeks after they went missing, Dawn Walker is facing several charges on both sides of the border, with potentially more to be brought down. Tanner Chubey has the details – Aug 9, 2022

Saskatoon police say Dawn Walker is facing a charge of abduction in contravention of a custody order and public mischief after Walker and her son were found in the U.S after being reported missing in late July.

Walker and her son were reported missing on July 24 and were found safe on Aug. 5 in a rental unit in Oregon City, Ore.

Read more: ‘We can finally breath’ — Missing boy reunited with his family

On Friday, police said investigation determined the two had allegedly illegally crossed the border into the United States.

Click to play video: 'Saskatoon mother located by police in U.S. faces charges related to falsifying documents' Saskatoon mother located by police in U.S. faces charges related to falsifying documents
Saskatoon mother located by police in U.S. faces charges related to falsifying documents – Aug 8, 2022

During a press conference on Monday, Saskatoon police Deputy Chief Randy Huisman said it was determined Walker crossed the border into Montana at a crossing south of Lethbridge, Alta., but was unable to provide a time of when this occurred.

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Walker will be appearing in U.S. court Monday facing two charges from the United States Department of Homeland Security.

Walker is charged with a felony offence related to “false statements” in the use of a passport identifying another person.

She is also charged with a misdemeanor offence related to possession of an identification document that is stolen or produced without lawful authority.

Investigators have been advised by U.S. authorities that Walker will be detained in the U.S. for the short term. Saskatoon police are consulting with the provincial Crown to arrange for Walker’s future extradition to Canada.

Kevin Sonoff, a Public Affairs officer for the United States Attorney’s Office in the District of Oregon said in an email that, “Walker was ordered detained today as a flight risk pending further court proceedings.”

A memo from the trial also outlined the reasoning for keeping Walker detained.

“The defendant should be detained pending trial as a risk of nonappearance. The defendant kidnapped her own child and fled to the United States. The elaborate scheme she engaged in was designed for one purpose – to avoid the law and not be found. The defendant went to extreme efforts to steal identities for her and her son that allowed them to unlawfully enter the United States and hide; she hid and funneled assets to accounts to fund her flight from the law; and, she thoughtfully planned and engaged in an elaborate ruse in which she faked her death and that of her son,” read the memo.

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Court documents supplied by the office showed a check list of things to make it look like Walker and her son fell in the river.

“During a review of the notebooks with handwritten notes, I found several pages that seemed consistent with a “check list” of staging the odd circumstances of their disappearance (i.e. making it look like she and her son fell into the river). This list included things such as dying her hair, packing the car, getting toys, throwing her phone into the water, ditching her car by the bridge, possibly buying a “fishing rod,” “find nearest border,” covering her tattoo (WALKER has a distant tattoo on the web of her hand), and other things,” read the documents.

Huisman added that as investigation continues, Walker may be facing further charges in Canada and said at this time, he doesn’t have any confirmation about a potential motive.

He called the investigation “multifaceted.”

“We obtain things such as cellphone records, banking records, history of their associations with people, family. All those things are taken into account,” Huisman told reporters.

Investigators are also looking into any assistance Walker may have had.

The boy was returned to his father’s family on the weekend.

A rally was held in support of Dawn Walker on Sunday night in Saskatoon at Kiwanis Memorial Park.

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Friends, family and members of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations were in attendance at a rally held in support of Dawn Walker. Tanner Chubey / Global News

Walker’s sister, Kathy Walker, says while family and friends have spoken with Walker, communication has been limited.

Although Kathy says the situation isn’t ideal, she is overjoyed to know her sister and the little boy are alive.

“Immense relief and joy. I can’t just describe how wonderful it felt that they were still with us,” a tearful Kathy said.

Friends, family and members of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations were in attendance.

Read more: Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations issues alert for missing woman, son

The rally was named We Stand with Dawn Dumont Walker.

“Even though I don’t know all the details or all the circumstances of why she may have felt the need to leave with (her son), I know my sister is a wonderful person and that if she felt the need to do this then she had really good reasons for doing that,” Kathy told reporters Sunday.

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— with files from Tanner Chubey, Aishwarya Dudha and Brody Langager 

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