A man hunt in B.C. came to an end Wednesday when the suspect in the shooting of a Mountie near golden, and a murder in Saskatchewan was found dead.
RCMP confirmed they located the suspect, Sheldon Kyle Thunderblanket on Wednesday east of Revelstoke. Later that afternoon, police confirmed Thunderblanket was deceased.
“We delayed on confirming this information in order to ensure that next of kin notifications had been completed, as well as notifications to all the partner agencies who have a connection or interest in this case,” said Cpl. Dan Moskaluk.
The Independent Investigations Office of BC (IIO) will now investigate whether there was a connection between the suspect’s death and the actions of police. The exact cause of death is not yet known and is being investigated by the BC Coroner Service.
The RCMP officer shot during a traffic stop near Golden on Tuesday has been confirmed as RCMP Cst. Amber Brunner. She is expected to make a full recovery after being shot in the arm.
Revelstoke Mayor Mark McKee couldn’t offer any additional details on Thunderblanket’s apprehension but did say this incident has really opened the eyes of residents in the community regarding safety and security.
“We all think that we all live in this clean, safe environment and we do. But I think we all have to be vigilant and watch our neighbourhoods and protect our own environments,” McKee said.
Thunderblanket had been considered armed and dangerous.
Police found the stolen vehicle connected with Thunderblanket just outside Revelstoke Tuesday night.
This incident began when police were conducting a check stop on Highway 1 on Tuesday afternoon in connection with a possible theft. The driver of a stopped vehicle failed to comply with police direction and pulled out a rifle.
Witness Greg Jeannotte told Global News he heard two gunshots and then “police officer down, police officer down.” He said the suspect then carjacked a vehicle from an older couple and drove off westbound.
Officers closed Highway 1 between Revelstoke and Golden for about eight hours while they searched vehicles.
BC RCMP Cpl. Dan Moskaluk told NewsTalk 770 in an interview they had to re-route traffic to protect the crime scene.
“We cannot have vehicles driving through, physically over and through a scene we’re trying to protect and possibly destroy very important physical evidence that if you had somebody driving through it that could destroy it,” Moskaluk said.