RCMP Release Composite Sketch of Man Whose Body Was Found Near Dease Lake
RCMP have released a composite sketch of a man, whose body was found near a burned camperized truck south of Dease Lake, as they investigate the disappearances of the two young men who were driving the vehicle.
Police say 19-year-old Kam McLeod and 18-year-old Bryer Schmegelsky were last seen in the vehicle last Thursday afternoon, heading south down Highway 37 from the Super A General Store in Dease Lake.
The next day, their abandoned vehicle was found burning south of the Stikine River bridge -- and shortly afterwards, the body of a man was found near a highway pullout about two kilometres away.
Corporal Chris Manseau told a news conference in Surrey Monday afternoon that police aren't sure who the man was -- but he wasn't one of the missing teens.
"It is unclear at this time how or if this deceased male is connected with the vehicle fire or the two missing young men. The deceased male is described as five-foot-eight to five-foot-10, caucasian with a heavy build, 50-to-60 years old with a grey beard and grey hair; anyone with any information about Kam, Bryer or is able to help us identify the male is please asked to call our new TIPS line at 1-877-543-4822 or the Major Crime Line 778-290-5291," Manseau said.
The missing teens are both about six-foot-four and weigh about 180 pounds -- McLeod has dark brown hair and facial hair, while Schmegelsky has sandy brown hair.
They'd been travelling through BC to visit Whitehorse in the Yukon, looking for work.
It's not clear why they returned to BC, but police say they were last seen Thursday afternoon driving the vehicle south from the Super A General Store in Dease Lake.
[Cpl Chris Manseau]
[Sgt. Janelle Shoihet]
Later at the Surrey news conference, Sergeant Janelle Shoihet updated the separate -- but perhaps related -- investigation into the homicide deaths of 23-year-old Lucas Fowler of Australia and 24-year-old Chynna Deese of North Carolina, whose bodies were found near Liard Hot Springs in northeast BC last Monday..
Police also released a composite drawing of a man seen talking to them the night before.
"The man, seen in this composite sketch, was seen speaking to Lucas on the evening of July 14th 2019 on Highway 97; he is described as caucasian, with darker skin and dark hair; he's shorter than Lucas who stood 6-foot-3; and has a possible beard or glasses," she said, adding that at this point, he is not considered a suspect or even a person of interest -- but someone who may be able to help the investigation.
One thing is very clear -- people are on edge.
"We share the concerns that are raised given the nature of these two investigations that we have underway; we would like to stress the importance of heightened vigilance and awareness of anybody travelling in and around the area," said Shoihet.
And there are many more questions than answers.