Canadian teens may have escaped: police

Bryer Schmegelsky (left) and Kam McLeod are suspected of killing three people. Photo: Reuters
Bryer Schmegelsky (left) and Kam McLeod are suspected of killing three people. Photo: Reuters

Canadian police are "exploring the possibility" that the teenage accused killers Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky may have fled the small town of Gillam, Manitoba, with the help of a third person.

An aggressive search by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, SWAT teams, sniffer dogs, drones and aircraft for McLeod, 19, and Schmegelsky, 18, continued in the town and surrounding wilderness on Friday.

With no confirmed sightings of the duo outside of Gillam the RCMP believes they still likely remain in the area, but are open to the possibility they may have changed their appearance and someone inadvertently assisted them to leave.

"It is possible that someone may not have been aware of who they were, providing assistance to and may now be hesitant to come forward," RCMP Corporal Julie Courchaine told reporters on Friday.

"I want to reiterate the importance of contacting police immediately."

McLeod and Schmegelsky are suspected of shooting dead Australian tourist Lucas Fowler and his US girlfriend Chynna Deese in the western Canadian province of British Columbia on July 14.

Australian man Lucas Fowler and his US girlfriend were shot and killed in Canada.
Australian man Lucas Fowler and his US girlfriend were shot and killed in Canada.

They are also accused of murdering University of British Columbia botanist Leonard Dyck in BC before driving more than 3000km east to Gillam.

The duo's torched Toyota RAV4 was found in scrub near Gillam on Monday evening and there have been no reports of stolen cars, leading authorities to believe they are still in the area and may have fled into bushland.

To help generate public leads the RCMP released security video of McLeod and Schmegelsky walking through a supply store.

The RCMP will also begin door-to-door visits of homes and businesses in an attempt to find the teenagers or glean new information from locals.

"Over the next 72 hours investigators will conduct door-to-door canvases in the town of Gillam and Fox Lake Cree Nation in hopes of generating new tips and information," Corporal Courchaine said.

"Residents in these areas can be assured that we are activating all necessary resources to protect the public and officer safety."

The RCMP also confirmed a photo that became viral on social media of a man with an appearance similar to McLeod was not the fugitive.

The man is holding up a newspaper with a front page featuring the fugitives.

Corporal Courchaine said the the RCMP had been in contact with the man and the photo was "unintentionally circulated on social media".

McLeod and Schmegelsky, from Port Alberni, near Vancouver, are longtime school friends who recently worked at Walmart.

Fowler, 23, from Sydney, and Ms Deese, 24, from North Carolina, were on a road trip of Canada when their old Chevrolet van broke down on a remote highway.

Their bodies were found in a ditch.

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