Nova Scotia

2 arrested in Sheet Harbour double homicide

A man and a woman have been arrested in connection with a double homicide in Sheet Harbour, where the bodies of two men were found after a fire off Highway 374.

A man and a woman have been arrested in connection with a double homicide in Sheet Harbour, where the bodies of two men were found after a fire off Highway 374.

The RCMP said a 61-year-old man was arrested in Sheet Harbour on Tuesday morning, while a 45-year-old woman was arrested in Halifax.

Their names have not been released because they haven't been charged.

Immediately after the arrests, RCMP began searching a residence on Herring Cove Road in Halifax and a property on Highway 374 near Sheet Harbour.

The man was arrested at the property just off the highway. It's owned by Elmer Perry Vincent Higgins and Karen Marie Higgins, and is less than 200 metres away from the burned-out camp where the bodies were found.

The woman was arrested at the home on Herring Cove Road, which is also owned by the Higgins couple.

That property is about a kilometre away from where Earl Stewart lived. Neighbours say he was one of the victims, though police have not released the names of either victim.

"We're comfortable we know who the men were, but because of the extent of the bodies we're relying on the forensic identification for 100 per cent of their identity," said Cpl. Scott MacRae, an RCMP spokesman.

The bodies of the two men were discovered last week after witnesses reported seeing a fire at a building that was described as either a cottage or hunting camp. The men's bodies were found in the rubble.

Their deaths were confirmed as homicides days later.

Getting trees

RCMP said they believe the two men were in Sheet Harbour getting Christmas trees.

"Early on in the investigation and talking to people, police were told that they were down in Sheet Harbour at least originally looking for Christmas trees, and even when we seized a van that we believed was driven by one of the gentlemen there was trees in the back of that van," MacRae said.

That fire-damaged van was seized last week from the property where the bodies were found.

Police have until 9 a.m. Wednesday to either charge the man and woman they arrested Tuesday morning or release them.

Sheet Harbour is approximately 122 kilometres northeast of Halifax.

now