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What we know about the stabbings in Saskatchewan

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Saskatchewan offered an update tonight on one of the worst mass killings in the country's history. They say one of the two suspects has been found dead. His brother is still at large and may be injured. Here's Saskatchewan RCMP commanding officer Rhonda Blackmore.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

RHONDA BLACKMORE: We do want the public to know this because there is a possibility he may seek medical attention. Even if he is injured, it does not mean he is not still dangerous.

SHAPIRO: Others have been charged with murder for the attacks, which left 10 victims dead and more than a dozen injured. Bill Graveland is national correspondent for the Canadian Press, and he's covering the story from Regina. Welcome back to the program.

BILL GRAVELAND: Thank you.

SHAPIRO: What did you learn in this latest police briefing?

GRAVELAND: Well, the police wouldn't actually say it. But the inference is, is that the two suspects in the case, who are brothers, obviously got into some sort of a dispute. And it's likely that the suspect that's still around is the one that actually stabbed the Damien Sanderson.

SHAPIRO: And what's going on with the manhunt for that brother who is believed to be alive and injured?

GRAVELAND: Well, I talked to the Regina police chief, and he maintains that the information they received yesterday about the vehicle and Myles Sanderson being in Regina is accurate. So he suggests that Sanderson is still around or still in the southern Saskatchewan area and that there was a second person in the vehicle with him. So at this point, they still have plenty of police officers up near where the stabbing occurred, but they're also beating the bushes pretty well down here in Regina.

SHAPIRO: Just to give listeners some context, the stabbings occurred some 200 miles north of Regina, where you are, where the suspect is believed to be. Tell us about what unfolded yesterday in those attacks.

GRAVELAND: Well, early yesterday morning, there was a number of 911 calls to the RCMP, and it turned out there had been 13 separate attacks, some random, some not random. And in it, 10 people died. And at this point, they're now saying 18 people were injured. And of those 18 that were injured, four are still in critical condition. They have been looking across the - well, across Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, looking for the two. And now it's down to one. But it's the worst mass murder in western Canada, I believe, in history.

SHAPIRO: And what is known about the victims so far?

GRAVELAND: So far, the victims, we've heard that - excuse me - that the youngest was in his early 20s. The oldest was, I believe, 77 - both men and women. Police denied reports that a child had been stabbed. But, you know, at this point, there was a mother of two. They haven't given much detail. This is just what we've been able to confirm independently. And the 77-year-old man was in the village of Weldon. And we talked to some of his next-door neighbors. And they said he was just a kind, happy man that would give you the shirt off his back.

SHAPIRO: There was a line in today's police advisory that stood out to me. It said, for those returning home after long weekend travels, please look for evidence of suspicious activity at and around your home before entering it. Just briefly, I imagine this is a frightening time for people in Regina.

GRAVELAND: Well, it is scary, and people are back to school. The police chief addressed that this afternoon, saying that if you went into your garage and you hadn't been there for a while and it looked as if something had been moved around, to not go in, to call the police, and they would happily come and search anywhere where you were concerned that there might have been someone hiding out. But it's a scary situation, especially if you have young children.

SHAPIRO: Sure.

GRAVELAND: And these people seem fairly indiscriminate when it comes to who they attack.

SHAPIRO: That's Bill Graveland, national correspondent for the Canadian Press. Thank you for your reporting.

GRAVELAND: My pleasure. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Ari Shapiro has been one of the hosts of All Things Considered, NPR's award-winning afternoon newsmagazine, since 2015. During his first two years on the program, listenership to All Things Considered grew at an unprecedented rate, with more people tuning in during a typical quarter-hour than any other program on the radio.
Sarah Handel