The Royal Canadian Mountain Police (RCMP) revealed on July 27 that they have been investigating sexual abuse allegations at a former residential school in Sagkeeng First Nation for the past decade.
The RCMP in the Manitoba province said in a statement that they began looking into the allegations at the Fort Alexander Residential School in February 2010.
After going through thousands of archival documents to identify who was involved and canvassing over 700 people across North America, RCMP launched a criminal investigation in 2011.
According to RCMP, they obtained 75 statements from witnesses and victims over the course of the investigation.
Over 80 investigators have been involved in the investigation and they have been engaged with the First Nations in Manitoba, including the Sagkeeng First Nation, which was “most closely affected by the investigation,” according to RCMP.
RCMP said that they sent their findings to prosecution services to review and to determine if charges are warranted.
No charges have been made at this time, RCMP said.
RCMP also said that they are not currently investigating other residential schools.
RCMP usually does not discuss ongoing investigations, but they decided to make it public after an inquiry from the Winnipeg Free Press.
“Due to the many people affected by this investigation as well as the larger social implications, it was determined to be in the public interest to provide as much information on the ongoing investigation as we can,” RCMP said.
However, RCMP also said that they will not provide any further information related to the specifics of the investigation, as it is still underway.