Shooting at James Smith leaves 2 dead, 1 wounded; search for suspect continues

RCMP Photo Shawn Moostoos

RCMP continue to search for Shawn Moostoos, the main suspect in a shooting incident that occurred on James Smith First Nation late Sunday night.

RCMP Major Crimes Unit South continues to investigate this incident, in conjunction with the Melfort RCMP Detachment. They continue to follow up on all tips and leads and encourage anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Shawn Moostoos to call 911 immediately.

Investigators believe he may be armed and should not be approached. Moostoos is described as a 33-year-old male with brown eyes, brown hair, just over 6 feet tall, weighing 189 pounds. He has a scar on his left hand. He may be driving a 2003, white Pontiac Montana, with Saskatchewan license plate 938 MBT.

RCMP have confirmed that three individuals were shot during an altercation in a residence on the James Smith First Nation at approximately 7:19 p.m. on September 5.

Since this incident was reported to police, the James Smith First Nation and surrounding area have been thoroughly searched. These search efforts included assistance from Saskatoon Police Service Air 1, STARS Air Ambulance, surrounding RCMP Detachments and Police Dog Services.  Investigators have followed up on multiple tips and reported sightings from the public.

A 37-year-old male and a 28-year-old female from James Smith Cree Nation are confirmed to be deceased as a result of this incident. The families of the deceased have been notified of the deaths and their names will not be released by RCMP at this time.

Police say they do not have any updates on the condition of a 44-year-old male who was injured in the shooting. He was transported to hospital with what were described as serious, but not life-threatening injuries. RCMP say the suspect and the three victims were known to each other.

Police have asked the public to be cautious about what they share about the case on social media. RCMP say it is easy for misinformation and rumours to spread during tragic incidents like this. 

The Saskatchewan RCMP stated that they are committed to ensuring the public has accurate information, and updates will be provided as they become available.

The investigation is ongoing and residents in the area can expect to see an increased police presence. Residents are asked to respect police barricades and any direction given by police.

On Sunday evening, the Saskatchewan RCMP sent out an alert about a shooting incident at James Smith First Nation. The emergency was called a Critical Alert and a Civil Emergency. The alert said to expect heavy police presence in the area. Non-residents were urged to avoid the community.

Investigators lifted the alert after determining the suspect and the victims were known to each other, and a certain amount passed without a follow-up incident.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call their local police service or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477.