A 31-year-old man was charged with the murder of two Métis hunters in northern Alberta over the past weekend.
On Wednesday, Anthony Michael Bilodeau went to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) station in Bonnyville, Alberta, where he was arrested and charged with the deaths of Jake Sansom and his uncle, Maurice Cardinal . He faces charges of second degree murder.
An argument at the origin of the drama
Police said two vehicles stopped on a rural road near Glendon around 9:30 p.m. last Friday. A dispute between the occupants of the two vehicles would then have turned into a physical confrontation.
A third vehicle reportedly arrived at the scene and several shots were fired, police said.
The bodies of Maurice Cardinal and Jake Sansom were found on a rural road near the latter’s Dodge Ram 1500 black van, early Saturday morning. The two men were shot dead.
Sergeant Jason Zazulak, of the RCMP Major Crimes Unit in Alberta, said the victims did not know the other three and the reasons for the shooting are still unclear.
“Right now, we are examining all possible investigative theories,” he said.
“I think it’s very unusual,” he added, referring to the randomness of the attack. “We don’t often see crimes of this nature. ”
The two Métis left the day before to hunt moose. Jake Sansom intended to hunt so that he could feed his family. He had just lost his job as a heavy vehicle mechanic for the Suncor company due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
After killing a moose, they took a break to take a photo together. They then brought the carcass of the animal to a farm belonging to the stepson of Maurice Cardinal. Jake Sansom’s brother, Mike Sansom, had joined them there to charge the animal, but he had left before the two victims.
Jake Sansom, 39, was married and the father of three children. Maurice Cardinal, 57, had three stepchildren and five grandchildren.
The investigation is not yet finished
The RCMP have stated that the nature of the gunshot wounds and the number of shots fired will not be disclosed, in order to protect the integrity of the investigation.
The accused, Anthony Michael Bilodeau, has been remanded into custody and is scheduled to appear in court by videoconference on April 9.
Sergeant Zazulak stated that the accused had had no previous relationship with the two victims.
Court documents show that a restraining order was issued for Anthony Michael Bilodeau and the two people who were in the third vehicle. These people knew each other before the shooting.
Police are looking for anyone with video footage of the area – including routes 84, 90, 614 and 620 – between 8 p.m. Friday and 4 a.m. Saturday.
Glendon is located approximately 200 kilometers north of Edmonton.