Missing Teens Are Now Suspects in Slaying of American and Her Boyfriend in Canada
Kam Mcleod and Bryer Schmegelsky are now suspects in the slayings of Chynna Deese and Lucas Fowler
The mystery surrounding the slayings of a young couple in a remote part of Canada deepened Tuesday when police announced that two missing Canadian teens are now suspects in the case — and in the death of an unidentified man whose body was found near a burning truck police say the teens abandoned.
On Tuesday afternoon, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police posted a picture of the two missing Canadian teens in an alert on Twitter, saying, “Please share! We are asking the public that if you spot Kam Mcleod or Bryer Schmegelsky to consider them as dangerous – take no actions – do not approach – and call 911 immediately.”
The teens, who were recently spotted in northern Saskatchewan, are wanted for questioning in connection with all three deaths, say police.
The teens vanished shortly after the bodies of Chynna Noelle Deese, 24, of Charlotte, North Carolina, and Lucas Robertson Fowler, 23, of Australia, were found on the side of a desolate stretch of a Canadian Highway on July 15, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) said in a statement.
The couple was shot to death after their 1986 Chevrolet van broke down during a road trip through British Columbia, the RCMP said.
On Friday, authorities found the teens’ abandoned truck burning nearly 300 miles away in British Columbia, the RCMP said in a statement.
That day, they also found the remains of an unidentified white man between 50 and 60 years old with gray hair, a gray beard and a heavy build near Dease Lake, where the teens’ truck was located, the RCMP said.
The man’s death is considered suspicious.
On Monday, authorities released a sketch of a person of interest in the case.
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The man in the composite sketch was seen speaking with Fowler on Highway 97 the night before his body was found, say police in a statement. He is described as white, with darker skin and dark hair, and a possible beard and maybe glasses. He is shorter than Fowler, who was 6 feet 3 inches tall.
Surveillance Footage Released From 2 Evenings Before Bodies Were Found
Authorities also released video footage taken at a gas station in Fort Nelson on July 13 showing the couple pulling up to the station at 7:30 p.m. Fowler pumps gas while Deese washes the windshield and windows with a squeegee.
When Deese is finished, she and Fowler hug in front of the pumps before heading inside the gas station, where they remain for about 7 minutes. They leave at 7:47 p.m.
Fowler, who was from Australia, was living in British Columbia at the time of his death. Deese was visiting him to travel and explore the area.
Deese’s mother, Sheila, told WSOC that the couple planned to travel by van through the Canadian countryside while visiting all the national parks.
“They had mapped out their route,” she told the news outlet. “And to my understanding, the van broke down and that’s where tragedy happened,” Sheila said.
“She loved people. She didn’t meet a stranger, but she was cautious,” the grieving mother added. “It’s tragic when someone dies, but when they’re in another country, you can’t go and be near them. You can’t be face-to-face and ask questions or go and see where it happened. I don’t want it to happen to someone else. I do want to find the person who did it.”
The FBI and the State Department are now assisting with the case.
Fowler’s family is making the trip to Canada from Australia to “bring our boy home.”
“To lose someone so young and vibrant, who was traveling the world and just enjoying life to the full, is devastating,” Fowler’s family said in a statement through police, according to the RCMA website. “To know his beautiful girlfriend, Chynna Deese of Charlotte, North Carolina also lost her life in this violent event is too cruel.”
Reflecting on the couple’s relationship, Sheila said she’s comforted knowing the two were together until the end.
“It is a love story, a southern girl goes out of the country, meets this Australian and they were just the same personality,” she said. “It was like two butterflies that found each other and they were going to be forever.”