Inquests to be held into Saskatchewan stabbings, death of suspect in custody

inquests

Saskatchewan’s chief coroner says two public inquests are to be held following the deadly stabbing rampage on Sept. 4 on James Smith Cree Nation and nearby village of Weldon.

One will focus on the 11 deaths on James Smith Cree Nation and Weldon. The other will focus on the death of suspect Myles Sanderson in police custody days later.

The coroner expects the inquests could happen in the spring or summer of next year.

RCMP have said Sanderson went into medical distress shortly after he was taken into custody on a rural road near Rosthern, Sask. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Chief Coroner Clive Weighill said Wednesday that preliminary autopsy results show Sanderson did not suffer from blunt force trauma.

Weighill said that with no suspects to stand trial, people are left wanting answers. So he has ordered the two inquests.

“Without a public hearing of the facts, it will leave many questions unanswered from the families and the public pertaining to the circumstances leading to the deaths,” Weighill said.

“The events that occurred require a methodical and complete investigation.”

RCMP also named Sanderson’s brother, Damien Sanderson, as a murder suspect and his body was one of the 11 found on the First Nation.

Police said he died of wounds that were not self-inflicted, and his brother was also considered a suspect in that death.

Weighill added that he intends to have all Indigenous people sit on the inquest juries.

The Canadian Press