Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.

Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.

VIDEO: Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder still at large from Mission Institution

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

Update:

Bellingham Police are reporting a possible sighting of a man who escaped from the Mission Institution’s minimum security unit last night.

Original story:

A man convicted of first-degree murder has escaped Mission Institution’s minimum security unit.

When prison staff were conducting the end-of-night head count at 10 p.m., they realized that Roderick Muchikekwanape was not present, Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) said in a news release.

The Mission RCMP detachment was contacted at 10:30 p.m., and issued a warrant for his arrest for being unlawfully at large, said Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP.

He said a risk assessment was conducted with CSC and the Parole Board of Canada, and there’s nothing to indicate he’s a threat to the general public.

“While we are aware that Roderick Muchikekwanape has a history of significant violence, we do not believe that he is an immediate threat to the general public,” said Berze. “If you see him, do not approach and call your local police.”

The Mission RCMP has assigned a team of five or six investigators from the serious crime unit, Berze said.

Muchikekwanape is currently serving a life sentence. In 1998, he was convicted of murdering Kimberly Clarke in Winnipeg as she was walking home from a party. Clarke was 36-years old, and a mother of three.

Clarke’s body was found floating in Red River, which passes through the center of Winnipeg. She had been sexually assaulted and battered, according to the autopsy report.

Muchikekwanape, 41, is described as six-feet tall, weighing 217 pounds, having medium complexion, and black hair and brown eyes.

CSC and RCMP officers will be investigating how Muchikekwanape was able to escape the prison, Berze said, but they are not prepared to talk about those specifics yet.

He did disclose that Muchikekwanape left the prison with a number of his personal belongings, an amount that “could fit into the size of a duffle bag,” and he was last seen in the prison at 7 p.m., Berze said.

The initial stages of the investigation involve speaking with the last CSC employees and neighbouring inmates he was in contact with, looking at CSC phone records and CCTV footage, canvassing the nearby neighbourhood, and then contacting family and friends and identifying places of interest, according to Berze.

“Avenues usually identify themselves from there,” Berze said. At this point within the detachment, it’s all hands on deck. So we have everyone on the lookout actively looking for him.”

Berze said he is not aware of Muchikekwanape being outside the prison for CSC programs.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts are asked to contact the Mission RCMP immediately.

“It’s important for the public to be diligent to be on the lookout, and to report anything at all that they may see. Any piece of information, or even suspicious activity, that they see could be helpful in locating and arresting him,” Berze said.

RELATED: Staff shortages plague Mission Institution following recovery from COVID-19 outbreak

Mission

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

An electronic sign at the Tofino-Ucluelet junction notifies travellers heading towards Sutton Pass that closure windows are in effect Thursday morning. (Andrew Bailey photo)
Survey swirls up confusion around Tofino-Ucluelet highway closures

“The Highway 4 Kennedy Hill Project closure times remain the same for now,” ministry says

Nuu-chah-nulth language champion Tim Masso holds his Rainy Coast Arts Award. (Jessie Masso photo)
Masso and Wenstob receive 2020 Rainy Coast Arts Award

Tla-o-qui-aht brothers share Pacific Rim Arts Society honour

Pamela Evans gazes lovingly at her four-year-old French bulldog Jack on Thursday, Nov. 5. The energetic young pup has regained his usual rambunctiousness after recently recovering from a significant illness brought on by consuming discarded cannabis new Brown’s Beach in Ucluelet. (Andrew Bailey photo)
Discarded cannabis a “frequent” threat to pets in Tofino-Ucluelet

“I couldn’t grab him fast enough to get it out of his mouth before he swallowed it.”

The School District 70 administration office in Port Alberni. AV NEWS FILE PHOTO
Four Alberni schools reporting COVID-19 exposures

Exposures occurred between Nov. 19 and Nov. 25 depending on the school

A lightning strike destroyed a radio repeater on Porter Mountain, shutting down the Ministry of Transportation and infrastructure’s highway cam at Sutton Pass. (BC Transportation and Infrastructure photo)
Lightning strike shuts down camera on Tofino-Ucluelet highway

“One of our radio repeater sites was recently struck by lightning.”

Motorists wait to enter a Fraser Health COVID-19 testing facility, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, Nov. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Another 694 diagnosed with COVID-19 in B.C. Thursday

Three more health care outbreaks, 12 deaths

Ten-month-old Aidan Deschamps poses for a photo with his parents Amanda Sully and Adam Deschamps in this undated handout photo. Ten-month-old Aidan Deschamps was the first baby in Canada to be diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy through Ontario’s newborn screening program. The test was added to the program six days before he was born. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Children’s Hospital Eastern Ontario *MANDATORY CREDIT*
First newborn tested for spinal muscular atrophy in Canada hits new milestones

‘If Aidan had been born any earlier or anywhere else our story would be quite different’

A demonstrator wears representations of sea lice outside the Fisheries and Oceans Canada offices in downtown Vancouver Sept. 24, demanding more action on the Cohen Commission recommendations to protect wild Fraser River sockeye. (Quinn Bender photo)
First Nations renew call to revoke salmon farm licences

Leadership council implores use of precautionary principle in Discovery Islands

BC Ambulance Services reassures people that the service is well staffed and ready to respond. Photo by Don Bodger
BC Ambulance assures the Island community they’re ‘fully staffed’

‘Paramedics are not limited to a geographical area.’ — BCEHS

(Pixabay)
Canadians’ mental health has deteriorated with the second wave, study finds

Increased substance use one of the ways people are coping

A coal-fired power plant seen through dense smog from the window of an electric bullet train south of Beijing, December 2016. China has continued to increase thermal coal production and power generation, adding to greenhouse gas emissions that are already the world’s largest. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
LNG featured at B.C. energy industry, climate change conference

Hydrogen, nuclear, carbon capture needed for Canada’s net-zero goal

An RCMP officer confers with military rescuers outside their Cormorant helicopter near Bridesville, B.C. Tuesday, Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey
Good Samaritan helped Kootenay police nab, rescue suspect which drew armed forces response

Midway RCMP said a Good Samaritan helped track the suspect, then brought the arresting officer dry socks

People line up at a COVID-19 assessment centre during the COVID-19 pandemic in Scarborough, Ont., on Wednesday, December 2, 2020. Toronto and Peel region continue to be in lockdown. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19 vaccine approval could be days away as pressures mount on health-care system

Many health officials in regions across the country have reported increasing pressures on hospitals

Most Read