Police were continuing to investigate after the charred remains of four people were found Friday in a burnt-out car in Timmins, Ont., officials said Sunday, noting that they were not yet sure whether the person responsible was among those who died.
A spokesman for the Timmins Police Service said the car, burnt so badly that police were not initially able to say whether it was blue or green, was discovered on Friday night.
Marc Depatie said investigators don’t believe there is any danger to the community at large.
“The Timmins Police Service wants to make it very clear that there is no need for public anxiety,” he said at a news conference Sunday. “Indications are this person had knowledge of and was familiar to the victims.”
He noted that investigators have a good idea of who the victims might be, but are waiting for confirmation from a post-mortem examination in Toronto before releasing any information.
Depatie said officers have already reached out to family members of the people believed to be the victims in an effort to brace them for the worst.
Police also know who owned the burnt car, but said only that the person is from Timmins.
Depatie said police are still on the scene of the incident south of Timmins and are collecting physical evidence at the site. What remains of the car, he said, was taken to Toronto for a thorough examination by forensic investigators.
“We’re hoping that members of the public who may have seen the vehicle in that area or within the city of Timmins will come forward with information that can help determine a timeline leading up to the tragedy,” he said, adding that the city is grappling with the extent of the incident.
“A loss of life of this gravity and magnitude is certainly out of the ordinary for the Timmins Police Service and the general area,” he said.
“This is certainly a benchmark occurrence.”