'Every aspect,' including 'historical issues,' focus of search for Dawn Walker and her child: RCMP
Well-known Indigenous leader and her child not seen for almost a week
Saskatchewan RCMP and Saskatoon police say they are leaving no stone unturned as they investigate the disappearance of Dawn Walker and her child.
Walker, 48, and her child were last seen on Friday evening.
"The RCMP and Saskatoon police services are focusing on every aspect of this investigation, including any historical issues," RCMP Staff Sgt. Greg Abbott told reporters Thursday.
For several days, Walker's loved ones have publicly repeated that she's been a victim of domestic violence, and called on police to conduct a thorough investigation.
"She's a very strong individual to endure what she's endured through her personal life, her struggles, and to be able to be on top of things at work, and [to] always take time for other," Heather Bear, Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) vice-chief, said earlier this week.
Police have confirmed Walker has filed domestic abuse reports, but Saskatoon police criminal investigation Supt. Patrick Nogier has chosen to withhold whether any charges were laid.
There is no evidence of foul play at the moment in the disappearance, police say.
On Monday, RCMP located Walker's truck at Chief Whitecap Park, near the Riverside Country Club. Some of Walker's personal items were found nearby, but there was no trace of her or her child.
Walker, also known as Dawn Dumont Walker, has been chief of staff at the FSIN for almost 10 years. The FSIN describes her as a tireless advocate for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.
She's also a well-known author in Saskatchewan and ran for the federal Liberal Party in Saskatoon in 2021.
Police and RCMP have been leading a search by land, air and boat, and will be expanding the search farther down the river. A missing persons investigation is also underway.
"We are searching throughout the long weekend," Abbot said. "We continue to search and we're going to use every resource possible."
Walk held to pray for Walker, child's return
On Thursday, at least a hundred of Walker's friends, family and supporters marched for an hour from Chief Whitecap Park to Diefenbaker Park praying to bring Walker and her child home.
Vice-chief Aly Bear said it's "extremely disturbing" that Indigenous women go missing so often.
"We continue to try to spread awareness, but it just doesn't seem like there's any change that's happening and it's heavy," Bear said tearfully.
"This week has been hard and I feel for all of our people that are here today and the family. The mom, Theresa, especially — that's her baby, and her grand baby."