Saskatchewan inquest to hear details from officers who took killer into custody

A Saskatchewan coroner’s inquest is expected to hear more from officers and paramedics who responded as a mass killer was taken into police custody. 

Myles Sanderson had been on the run for several days when police caught up to him on Sept. 7, 2022.

Jurors were shown video from RCMP dashboard cameras of a high-speed police pursuit that ended with Sanderson losing control of the truck he was driving, travelling into a ditch on a highway north of Saskatoon. 

The inquest heard Sanderson had a medical emergency while he was taken into custody and died in hospital.

A forensic pathologist said Tuesday that Sanderson had overdosed on cocaine. 

Three days before he was captured, Sanderson went from home to home on the James Smith Cree Nation and in the nearby village of Weldon, kicking in doors and attacking people. 

Eleven people were killed and 17 others injured. 

Darryl Burns, whose sister was killed on the First Nation, said watching Sanderson’s capture brought conflicting emotions. There was relief to actually see the danger was gone but he was also angered that Sanderson didn’t show any remorse, Burns said Tuesday.

“I felt anger when he was talking about the body count … to me he was looking for fame, looking for some kind of recognition,” Burns said. 

The inquest saw in video captured on RCMP dashboard cameras that Sanderson asked officers how many people he killed in the stabbing rampage as he was being searched. The 32-year-old also told RCMP that they should have shot him. 

The video shows Sanderson begin to convulse. He is placed on the ground and asked whether he’s taken any drugs. 

Officers performed chest compressions until paramedics arrived and took Sanderson to hospital in an ambulance. 

Arresting officers and front-line workers who provided Sanderson with medical care on the side of the highway are scheduled to provide evidence Wednesday.

The inquest, scheduled for the whole week in Saskatoon, is required under legislation because Sanderson died in police custody.

It is to establish when and where Sanderson died and the cause of his death. The six-person jury may also provide recommendations.

A separate inquest into the massacre was held last month, examining each of the killings and issuing more than two dozen recommendations.

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