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RCMP locate tipsters in Prince George

The RCMP have identified a "person of interest" in the disappearance of a missing St. Albert couple. Police are searching for Travis Edward Vader, 38, who they describe as dangerous.

The RCMP have identified a "person of interest" in the disappearance of a missing St. Albert couple.

Police are searching for Travis Edward Vader, 38, who they describe as dangerous.

The update comes two weeks after Lyle Thomas McCann, 78 and Marie Ann McCann, 77 left St. Albert on July 3 in their motorhome with SUV in tow for a vacation in B.C.

The couple's SUV, a light green Hyundai Tucson, was recently spotted in Prince George, B.C. Police there recently interviewed a pair of tipsters who reported seeing the vehicle.

Police have released this security video footage of Lyle McCann gasing up his motorhome at the Superstore gas bar in St. Albert on July 3

The McCanns were supposed to meet up with family on July 10 in Abbotsford, but never arrived. Their motorhome was found completely burned in the Edson area, at the Minnow Lake campground on July 5.

Const. Gary Godwin with the Prince George detachment said when the tipsters initially reported the vehicle sighting, staff at the office collected contact information. Police were unable to reach them for follow-up interviews.

"They just came back to the office now and one of our investigators is with them now."

Godwin said there have been other sightings of the SUV in Prince George, but police there have not yet located the vehicle.

"We haven't been able to stop this vehicle or find it, so we have to keep treating these as sightings until that happens."

The frantic search for the McCanns has lead to dozens of tips coming into the RCMP and police have used helicopters, forensic teams and search and rescue units in their efforts to locate the couple.

Civilian search and rescue crews completed a search around the Edson-area campground on Wednesday, in their attempt to find the McCanns, but came up empty handed.

Doris Stapleton, a spokesperson for the RCMP said the civilian crews scoured a wide area around where the motorohome was found.

"They did a wide search in that area and it is now completed," she said.

Edson RCMP attempted to contact the owners of the motorhome as part of their investigation into the fire, but it was not until family members reported them missing to the St. Albert detachment on Saturday that they realized the severity of the incident.

At a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Sgt. Patrick Webb with the RCMP said the force desperately needs information from the public to help find them.

"At this point in time the focus is on finding the McCanns and we need public help in doing this."

He said anyone who may have seen either vehicle or the couple should contact the police.

The pair was last seen filling up their vehicle at the Superstore gas station on St. Albert Trail at around 9:25 a.m. on July 3.

The motorhome was a 1999 Gulf Stream Voyager, painted green and white. Even though they have located it, police are looking for anyone who might have seen it between July 3 and July 5.

The Hyundai Tucson, which is still missing, is light green with Alberta licence plate ZPK-289.

Family shocked

The McCanns' eldest son Bret McCann also spoke at Tuesday's press conference and said his parents are responsible travellers who loved the open road. He said the family is shocked by their disappearance, but are hoping for the best.

"Our whole family is just devastated, from my father and mother's siblings to my brother and sister and our children, it is just devastating to us all," he said. "I am hoping that they maybe got waylaid, maybe the Hyundai got stuck somewhere. I am hoping they're out there somewhere in the bush."

He said he believes his parents, who have lived in St. Albert since 1964, were headed to Blue River, B.C. on the first day of their trip. His father was a retired long haul trucker, who considered the motorhome his "pride and joy." He doesn't think he would have stopped near Edson.

The RCMP has faced criticism for not doing more after the motorhome was found burned. Webb said it is not unusual for RCMP officers to come across burned-out vehicles and the motorhome did not initially overly concern police.

"It is a crime, but it was not that serious a crime because it was a property crime, not a person crime," he said. "In a perfect world those steps would have been taken right away, but we just can't do that with every burned vehicle, I myself have probably done a dozen of these over my career."

He said Edson RCMP did contact the St. Albert detachment to try and contact the registered owners of the motorhome. The force is now doing a complete review to try and determine exactly what took place.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the St. Albert RCMP at 780 458-7700 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

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