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B.C. murder suspects manhunt: Ontario residents call in tips, but none credible so far

As the nation-wide manhunt continues, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is certain of one thing: No one knows where B.C. murder suspects Bryer Schmegelsky and Kam McLeod are.
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As the nation-wide manhunt continues, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is certain of one thing: No one knows where B.C. murder suspects Bryer Schmegelsky and Kam McLeod are.

And the OPP media co-ordinator for northeastern Ontario is certain of something else: the two young men can't be in two places at once.

 Bryer Schmegelsky, left, and Kam McLeod. Photo via RCMPBryer Schmegelsky, left, and Kam McLeod. Photo via RCMP

"We had tips from Kapuskasing yesterday and one from Cochrane — they can't be in two places at once," Acting Sergeant Shona Camirand. "(And) Cochrane got another call last night, but it turned out to be two tree planters.

"Anytime people are seeing two scruffy young men, people suspect it's them."

Even today, a tip came in from Spanish regarding two males in a Ford truck, another vague tip about two young men in a vehicle, with no description beyond their apparent gender.

A message Camirand wants to push to people in Northern Ontario is if you see people you suspect might be Schmegelsky and McLeod, the first thing to do is call police with the tip. What she wants to discourage people from doing is immediately posting it to social media.

"(Social media posts) created chaos yesterday," Camirand said.

The OPP received "dozens" of tips from Kapuskasing yesterday, she said, and the OPP is following up on all of them.

The furor on July 31 was started with a Facebook post from Dylan Boucher, who said he spoke with a flagman working with a construction company in Kapuskasing who told him the B.C. murder suspects flashed a gun at him on Wednesday morning.

Sudbury.com tracked down Boucher yesterday, who said the flagman definitely seemed shaken up by the experience.

Camirand confirmed OPP had also spoken with the man (Sudbury.com is aware of the man's name, but we are not releasing it as we haven't been able to speak with him), and she said he told a similar story to officers.

That said, and regardless of what might have been said when police interviewed the flagman, OPP have not released any new information and no warnings to the public to be on the lookout for a particular vehicle.

So, despite an abundance of tips, "there are no creditable reports in Ontario" that Schmegelsky and McLeod are in the province.

What's more, Camirand said, there is nothing to indicate the men are in the North.

First, it's a 12-hour drive south from Gillam, Manitoba to the Ontario border, a route that would take the men through dozens of communities and the environs of Winnipeg to reconnect with the TransCanada Highway.

In order to make their way through Kapuskasing, Schmegelsky and McLeod would have had to take Highway 17, again through numerous communities, to Nipigon where Highways 17 and 11 split off, and follow 11 to loop north and east through, again, dozens of communities.

That journey is in the neighbourhood of 3,000 kilometres. They would have had to either gas up or steal vehicles, and stop for food, along the way. And there's just no evidence of that, Camirand said.

"They would have had to stop for gas, or dump vehicles and steal new ones," she said. "We would see a pattern."

While police can't say definitively that McLeod and Schmegelsky aren't in Northern Ontario, there's just no evidence beyond dozens of vague tips that have so far led nowhere.

"We don't know where they are, we just don't know," Camirand said.

The sergeant wanted to reiterate for the public that, if you do see something you think is suspicious, call police.

This article originally appeared on Sudbury.com