Officials working on plan for massive search of landfill for body
Published Thursday, August 9, 2012 4:57PM CST
Last Updated Thursday, August 9, 2012 5:39PM CST
Winnipeg police are working out logistics for what is expected to be the largest search of its kind in Manitoba.
On Wednesday, Winnipeg Police Chief Keith McCaskill announced officers will carry out a search of Brady Road Landfill for the body of Tanya Nepinak, 31.
Heavy equipment and hundreds of people will be needed for the search of the landfill.
Police said an ongoing investigation suggests Nepinak was murdered and her body placed in a garbage bin about eight months ago in the West End area. Police believe the bin was emptied at the Brady Road Landfill site.
Shawn Lamb, 52, faces a second-degree murder charge in Nepinak’s death, along with for the deaths of two other women. He was arrested in June.
Mirjana Roksandic, an anthropology professor at the University of Winnipeg, said she was contacted by police about a month ago, with investigators wanting her opinion on a potential large-scale site search.
“I think they have a pretty clear idea of where to look and what the timeframe is, but it’s still a substantial area and it will have to be done with a fine comb,” said Roksandic.
“Bone is very resilient, especially fresh bone, especially bone that’s surrounded by soft tissue, so you can expect to find some chunks of bone, if you are lucky. You can expect to find small fragments of bone if you're not lucky,” said Roksandic.
Forensic investigators and anthropologists have helped in previous searches, including sifting through soil to search for the remains of Robert Pickton’s murder victims in B.C.
Police said they want to bring closure to Nepinak’s family.
“Can you imagine having your own loved one possible being in the Brady Road Landfill site? That’s a horrendous thing for any family to go through,” said Chief McCaskill on Wednesday.
Officials are still working on determining when the excavation work at Brady Road Landfill can begin.
Police said they are also now considering the possibility of using volunteers to aid in the search.
- with a report from CTV's Caroline Barghout