CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Two teenagers wanted in the killings of Charlotte resident Chynna Deese and her Australian boyfriend, Lucas Fowler, in Canada, have been found dead, Canadian officials said Wednesday.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police released the news about the suspects, 19-year-old Kam McLeod and 18-year-old Bryer Schmedgelsky, during a news conference. Officials said the bodies they believe to be the two teens were found near the shoreline of the Nelson River, near a burnt vehicle.
Police said Tuesday that items belonging to the pair were found along the Nelson River in Manitoba. The two bodies were located less than a mile from the items.
Officials did not say how the suspects may have died.
Deese and Fowler’s bodies were found early in the morning hours of July 15 along a highway in rural British Columbia. Deese and Fowler were both shot, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Canadian officials named McLeod and Schmedgelsky as suspects in the killing of Deese, Fowler and a third person days later, with video of the suspects being released. The teens were reported missing before being named as suspects.
The third person’s body was found near Dease Lake. CBC News reports the third person was a man in his 50s or 60s and that his body was found two kilometers south of McLeod and Schmedgelsky’s burnt-out truck. That area was more than 470 kilometers away from the first crime scene, according to CBC News.
Canadian police warned anyone who may come into contact with McLeod or Schmedgelsky: “If seen, take no action – do not approach. Call 911 immediately.” They said the teens may have changed their appearance and could be driving a different vehicle.
Investigators also released two surveillance videos that showed Deese and Fowler, with the blue van they were travelling in, during a stop at a gas station before they were killed.
In a press conference, a representative from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police asked that anyone who had seen the two victims in the hours prior to their deaths come forward to speak with investigators.
The police displayed photos of Chynna, Fowler, and the van that was found near their bodies.
Just 48 hours after learning of her daughter’s death, Sheila Deese spoke to WBTV in a phone interview. She described her daughter in vivid detail, painting the portrait of a young woman who was just as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside.
The grieving mother said she didn’t learn her daughter had died until late Wednesday night. She said it was after 11 p.m. when she received a knock at the door from police officers.
“They directed me to the couch and said, ‘you need to sit down’ and I said, ‘is something wrong?’ and he said ‘yes, your daughter Chynna is deceased in Canada’, and I said ‘no, no’, and he said ‘yes ma’am and we don’t have any details, but here’s a phone number to contact the Royal Canadian Police,’” described Deese.
The mother said she spoke with investigators in Canada and confirmed that both her daughter and Fowler had been killed. She said she hasn’t received many details about her daughter’s death, other than being told Chynna was shot.
“I just want to know why,” said Sheila Deese. “You know, what was the purpose of it?”
She hopes the media attention her daughter’s story is getting will lead to people coming forward who may have seen Chynna or Fowler shortly before they died.