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Saskatchewan RCMP Historical Case Unit seeking public’s help to identify located human remains

Posted on 17 May 2024 by Ryan Dahlman

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On April 28, 2024, Moose Jaw RCMP began an investigation into human remains located in the RM of Moose Jaw.

Saskatchewan RCMP Major Crimes were initially consulted as is protocol when human remains are found. Upon attending the scene, investigators discovered a makeshift campsite in a deeply forested area. Evidence was collected and in collaboration with a forensic anthropologist and pathologist, investigators determined that the remains had been in the area for 10 to 12 years with no evidence to suggest the individual had met with foul play.

As the death was deemed non-suspicious, the case was transferred to the Saskatchewan RCMP Historical Case Unit (HCU). The unit, which operates under the Saskatchewan RCMP Major Crimes branch, is responsible for historical cases such including suspicious and non-suspicious missing persons as well as found/unidentified human remains.

The HCU, with assistance from officers from the Moose Jaw RCMP Detachment and Saskatchewan RCMP Search and Rescue Team, led searches of the campsite area. Investigators utilized tools such as remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), all-terrain vehicles, metal detectors and manual search techniques.

The initial searches have yielded a number of personal items including clothing, backpacks, and toiletries. One specific item helped investigators narrow down a timeframe for when the individual may have been in the area. A tube of toothpaste with a 2013 expiry date was located. Investigators contacted the manufacturer and learned that, given the expiration date, it was manufactured no earlier than 2012.

Investigators are releasing images of items found at the scene in an effort to garner information on who this individual may be.

“This is someone’s loved one and at the end of the day, we would love to be able to bring closure to that family,” says Cpl. Craig Park of the HCU. “We are reaching out to the public in the hopes that someone out there recognizes one of the items we recovered, or that it helps jog someone’s memory of an interaction or sighting of this person.”

The investigation remains in the early stages as searches of the area continue. Anyone with information is asked to call the HCU at 639-625-3156. Information can also be submitted anonymously by contacting Saskatchewan Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or http://www.saskcrimestoppers.com.

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