By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
REGINA, CANADA (Worthy News) – Police in Canada detained the final suspect in a mass stabbing that left 10 people dead and 18 others injured, but he died of self-inflicted wounds, officials said.
Myles Sanderson, 32, was found near the town of Rosthern in Canada’s western province of Saskatchewan as officers responded to a report of a stolen vehicle being driven by a man armed with a knife, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police confirmed.
His car was run off the road by police Wednesday, according to an official familiar with the situation. The official said the fugitive’s injuries were self-inflicted, but he didn’t have further details on when the injuries were inflicted or when he died. His brother and fellow suspect in the killings Damien Sanderson, 30, was earlier found dead Monday near the stabbing sites.
The detention and death of Myles Sanderson ended a chase that spanned three provinces and prompted questions about why he was granted prison parole despite a history of violence. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called the stabbings in Saskatchewan “shocking and heartbreaking.”
Sanderson’s arrest followed appeals from his parents. “Myles, my boy, turn yourself in. Please. You can do this,” his mother told Canadian broadcaster CBC. “Come back. Turn yourself in. Do the right thing.”
His father also called on his son to surrender. “Myles, please, please turn yourself in. We don’t want no more hurt. I don’t want nobody hurt anymore… please, my son. I love you. Turn yourself in. Be safe,” he said.
He faced multiple murder charges for his role in a knife attack that devastated the Indigenous community of James Smith Cree Nation and the nearby village of Weldon.
While motives were still being investigated, senior Indigenous leaders suggested drugs were somehow involved. Authorities said some of the victims were targeted, and others appeared to have been chosen randomly.
Sanderson’s arrest and death ended one of the most violent episodes against an Indigenous community in Canada’s recent history. Ten victims remain in hospital, three of them in critical condition, authorities said.
With the suspects no longer on the run, police released the list of those killed in the September 4 stabbings in Saskatchewan.
Nine of the 10 victims are from James Smith Cree Nation, an Indigenous community with nearly 3,500 members.
James Smith Cree Nation resident Darryl Burns and his brother, Ivor Wayne Burns, said their sister, Gloria Lydia Burns, was a first responder who was killed while trying to respond to a call. Burns said his 62-year-old sister was on a crisis response team.
“She went on a call to a house, and she got caught up in the violence,” he said. “She was there to help. She was a hero.”
He also blamed drugs and the past colonization of Indigenous people for the rampant drug and alcohol use on reserves.
“We had a murder-suicide here three years ago. My granddaughter and her boyfriend. Last year we had a double homicide. Now this year, we have 10 more that have passed away and all because of drugs and alcohol,” Darryl Burns said.
One of the 10 killed victims, Wesley Petterson, is from Weldon, a quiet farming town nearby of about 200 people. Locals described Petterson, the oldest of the victims at 78 years old, as a “lovely” man devoted to his community.
Neighbor Ruby Works said she had been left devastated by his death. “I couldn’t even catch my breath,” she told CBC, saying she was still in shock.
“If someone needed a hand, he helped. He was a kind-hearted man,” Works added about the man she had known since childhood and had looked on as an uncle. “He didn’t deserve this. Both communities are destroyed. All lives are shattered.”
If you are interested in articles produced by Worthy News, please check out our FREE sydication service available to churches or online Christian ministries. To find out more, visit Worthy Plugins.