The bodies of a missing mother and her 22-month-old daughter were found Monday, three weeks after they disappeared.
More than 50 officers from multiple units searched the area after police said cell towers showed there may be evidence in the area.
The Calgary police said that the bodies were discovered in a wooded area off a highway in Kananaskis, just west of Calgary. Those bodies have been identified as the missing mother, Jasmine Lovett, and her daughter, Aliyah Sanderson.
An autopsy is pending. The cause of death has not yet been announced.
Robert Leeming has been charged with two counts of second-degree murder. He was originally arrested and questioned by police on April 25th, but was released without charges initially. He was taken into custody and charged only one day after police found the bodies. Leeming is scheduled to appear in court on May 14th.
Leeming, 34, had lived with Jasmine Lovett and her toddler in a townhome that he owns. He had said he and Lovett were romantically involved “on and off.” Leeming also confirmed that Lovett and her daughter had been his tenants since October.
During a press conference, Calgary police Staff Sgt. Martin Shiavetta said that the murder was a “targeted attack motivated by domestic-related matters,” and also added, “It was a domestic relationship that deteriorated over time.”
Jasmine Lovett and her toddler was first reported missing on April 23rd when they didn’t show up for a family gathering. They had not been heard from since April 16th.
Robert Leeming had told reporters that he had gone on a picnic with Lovett and her daughter on April 17th, and last saw them the evening of April 18th, but according to police, they were last seen on the evening of April 16th at their home.
Police believe that they were murdered either in the evening hours of April 16th or early morning hours of April 17th, and then transported to to Kananaskis sometime between April 17th and April 20th.
The Lovett family released a statement thanking Calgary police, “as well as those who have worked diligently in the search for Jasmine and her baby girl Aliyah.”
“We would also like to thank the public for their continued support which has meant a great deal to us. Our lives have been devastated and our hearts are heavy. We are trying to understand how this tragedy could have happened to our loved ones.”