Community, police still looking for answers after arrest of suspect in Fort Good Hope

·2 min read
Fort Good Hope, N.W.T., viewed through the trees in July 2020. (Julien Schroder - image credit)
Fort Good Hope, N.W.T., viewed through the trees in July 2020. (Julien Schroder - image credit)

The man at the centre of a major police search in Fort Good Hope, N.W.T., has been arrested, but the investigation isn't over, say the RCMP.

Thaddeus McNeely, 24, turned himself in Thursday evening. Police had been searching for him since Tuesday night, after an attack where one person died and two others were seriously injured.

On Friday morning, RCMP Sgt. Chris Manseau said community members can expect to see more Mounties showing up over the coming days, including Manseau himself.

"We'll be in contact with leadership and we'll be looking for witnesses, speaking to anybody who has any information," he said.

"Now that we have the suspect in custody, the investigation isn't over. There's a lot of questions that still need to be answered."

He asked community members to contact police if they have any information, even if they think it's trivial.

Walter Strong/CBC
Walter Strong/CBC

Police got a call Thursday night from either the suspect or a family member, asking officers to come get him at a residence. They took him into custody without incident.

Manseau said police are still investigating what McNeely was doing during the two-day search and whether anyone was helping him.

"We were just very relieved, and I think the town was very relieved that this was resolved without any further problems or any other incident," he said.

Elder calls for community reflection

Fort Good Hope elder John T'seleie was in Fort McPherson when he heard about what had happened.

He said he is thankful for the concern other communities showed, with some holding prayers and ceremonies.

Submitted by Tim Tutcho Photography
Submitted by Tim Tutcho Photography

T'seleie said he thinks Fort Good Hope should have a community discussion about what happened and how to prevent anything similar from happening in the future.

He said he wants to see better communication between family and community members, even on difficult subjects.

"The community needs to talk about it and try to find some solutions to it," he said.

"We should all seriously think about what happened, how we might be able to make sure it doesn't happen again, and I think that's what we [should] do as soon as we can, as a community."