The preliminary timeline for the mass casualty homicides that took place on September 4, 2022, was presented on April 27 by Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore, Commanding Officer of the Saskatchewan RCMP, and Superintendent Joshua Graham, Officer in Charge of Saskatchewan RCMP Major Crimes.
The Saskatchewan RCMP Family Liaison Team consulted with surviving victims and their families from the James Smith Cree Nation and Weldon prior to the public release of the preliminary timeline to ensure that the presentation was victim-focused and trauma-informed.
With the help of the FSIN and Indigenous leadership, Saskatchewan RCMP Indigenous Policing Services (IPS) made sure that the presentation was culturally appropriate for the requirements of victims’ families and survivors. Recently, Saskatchewan RCMP officials and representatives had the honor of participating in a few stylized exercises in Melfort, including smirching, petition and a line service, to respect the 11 lives lost and getting through casualties in James Smith Cree Country and Weldon on September 4, 2022. Saskatchewan’s RCMP have constructed a teepee in front of the Kerry Vickar Center in Melfort in response to a request from Indigenous leadership.
The two upcoming inquests by the Saskatchewan Coroners Service and the independent investigation being carried out by the Saskatoon Police Service and the Saskatchewan Serious Incident Response Team will not be affected by the information that was shared with surviving victims and the families of deceased victims yesterday as well as with the media and the general public today.
Thus, the present show gave the accompanying data:
- The activities of Myles and Damien Sanderson prior to the morning of September 4, 2022; and
- The sequence of the attacks and their movements throughout the communities on September 4, 2022.
Saskatchewan RCMP Major Crimes worked closely with the Saskatchewan Coroners Service to ensure information included in the presentation will not impact the upcoming inquests scheduled to take place in 2024. For these reasons, we were not able to include:
- Information surrounding Myles Sanderson being Unlawfully at Large and efforts undertaken to locate and arrest him prior to September 4, 2022;
- Correctional Service of Canada information, Parole Board of Canada information and release decisions;
- The police response to the attacks;
- Specific details about what occurred at each location and inside each residence on September 4, 2022, and information relating to the cause and manner of the victims’ deaths; and
- Information detailing the arrest of Myles Sanderson, his cause and manner of death, and any aspects of the Saskatoon Police Service and Saskatchewan Serious Incident Response Team’s investigation.
The Saskatchewan RCMP Casualty Administrations Unit and Family Contact Group alongside officials from the Saskatchewan RCMP Native Policing Administrations Unit and Saskatchewan RCMP Significant Violations are working intimately with enduring casualties and expired casualty’s families from the James Smith Cree Country and Weldon, and those influenced by the misfortune.
The media’s cooperation and dedication to providing the public with an accurate account of September 2022 are greatly appreciated by the Saskatchewan RCMP.