Canada murder: New video reveals lovers’ final days
The families of Australian tourist Lucas Fowler, 23, and his American girlfriend Chynna Deese, 24, have been asked to prepare statements about their tragic loss, as police are set to reveal details of an investigation into their murders.
Chynna's mother, Sheila Deese, wrote on Facebook that her family has had meetings about how to handle the upcoming attention on her family, saying the pain never stops.
"As the case is concluded, we also need to say thank you. It's hard to express thanks to the police, the coroner and others because we feel empty. Media is still pursuing because your love story "Chynna and Lucas" has touched the world. Your handprints are everywhere. You made the world a better place….," Ms Deese wrote.
The Fowlers from Sydney have not made any comment.
It is expected that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police will announce tomorrow they have enough evidence to confirm childhood friends Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, and Kam McLeod, 19, were responsible for three murders.
They are said to have killed Chynna and Lucas and also Leonard Dyck, a botany lecturer at the University of British Columbia.
After a 15-day manhunt which stretched across four Canadian provinces, Schmegelsky and McLeod were found dead in an apparent suicide on August 7, in the wilderness near the town of Gillam in Northern Manitoba.
Police said the two appeared to have been dead for days before they were found, with two firearms nearby.
A recorded video of their last wishes was located with them, on a mobile phone.
The video described as Schmegelsky's "last will and testament" became the subject of a brief legal battle between the RCMP and Schmegelsky's father Alan, who was fighting to view it.
He was allowed access to it but had to sign a confidentiality agreement promising not to reveal its contents.
After the discovery of the killers' bodies, the RCMP said it was committed to sharing the details of the investigation with the public, after providing updates to the families of the victims and suspects.
There are many questions that have yet to be answered including how Mr Dyck was killed, what the evidence is linking the three murders, why charges were laid against the pair for Mr Dyck's death but not for Mr Fowler and Ms Deese's deaths. It is not known if police will release details of the video.
The loved-up couple had set off from a ranch where Mr Fowler had been working, for a driving and camping holiday across Canada when their van broke down on the remote Alaska Highway.
The teenage boys had set off in their Dodge pick-up on July 12 from Vancouver, telling family they were heading north to look for work, after quitting their low paying jobs at Walmart.
It has been revealed the teenagers bought a hunting rifle before they left on their trip.
Three days later Mr Fowler and Ms Deese were found shot to death alongside their broken down campervan on the highway near Liard Hot Springs in northern British Columbia.
Four days after that, Mr Dyck was found dead 500km away on another highway. Schmegelsky's and McLeod's abandoned, burnt out Dodge was found a further two km away from the burning car.
Police initially failed connect the three crime scenes, listing the teens as missing persons. Then eight days after Mr Fowler and Ms Deese's bodies were found, they switched their status from missing to murder suspects.
The RCMP launched a manhunt which lasted more than two weeks. RCMP officers worked 24/7, logging more than 4,500 investigation hours.
After the burnt out RAV 4 car that the teenagers had stolen from Mr Dyck was found 4000km away police zeroed in on Northern Manitoba searching more than 11,000 square kilometres of rugged terrain. The police called in the armed service to help scour rail lines, trains, hydro corridors, roads, waterways, coast line, forest and trails. They went door to door and searched hundreds of abandoned buildings and huts.
The hunt included aeroplanes, helicopters, boats, ATVs, police dogs, armoured vehicles, drones and underwater recovery teams and following up 250 tips from the public.