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Arrest made in 2021 northern Manitoba double homicide: RCMP


Manitoba RCMP have arrested a suspect in relation to a 2021 double homicide in a remote northern community.

Leon Paul Mercredi, 22, was apprehended on April 22 in Fond du Lac, Sask., and is facing two charges of first degree murder.

Brent Denechezhe, 31, and Leona Tssessaze, 24, were found dead following a house fire in Northlands Denesuline First Nation on Sept.9, 2021.

“Today, we do have a man in custody, and some answers for the family and community, but that is not to say that this is over,” said Supt. Rob Lasson with the RCMP’s major crimes unit. This double homicide has no doubt had a profound effect on a very tight-knit community.”

Mecredi is in custody in Winnipeg and the charges against him have not been proven in court.

According to Lasson, Denechezhe, Tssessaze and Mercredi were spending time together, when a disagreement occurred. Lasson alleges the accused returned with a firearm, shot and killed Denechezhe and Tssessaze, before setting the house on fire.

“Families, and a very small community, were shattered,” Lasson said.

An extensive investigated occurred, Lasson said, with officers in the community as recently as March 2024. Information was posted on social media, and messages in the Dene language were posted in the community in an attempt to find tips.

“When we engaged the community, the community responded wholeheartedly,” Lasson said.

RCMP allege Mercredi lived in Northlands Denesuline First Nation and left the community shortly after the murders, and they don’t believe anyone else is involved in the shooting.

Northland Denesuline First Nation Chief Simon Denechezhe said the events have had an extensive effect on area residents. 

“Losing Brent, Leona, has affected every person in the community. Not knowing caused fear of anxiety among our people, for a very small community isolated,” said Denechezhe. 

Despite the pain involved in rehashing the details of the investigation, Denechezhe said having answers in the case will help the community process its loss. 

“We cannot live in anger, we must move forward, we must forward in healing, we must do it together,” said Denechezhe. Top Stories

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