Watson Lake man faces murder charge after human remains found

A Watson Lake man faces charges of second-degree murder and dismembering a body after human remains were found outside of the community Saturday.

A Watson Lake man faces charges of second-degree murder and dismembering a body after human remains were found outside of the community Saturday.

Travis Dennis, 22, appeared in Yukon territorial court Tuesday.

A publication ban prohibits the disclosure of the victim’s identity.

Crown prosecutor Eric Marcoux told the News Tuesday the ban will be lifted in three weeks, in time for the accused’s next scheduled court appearance.

The short time between the discovery of the remains and Dennis’s arrest prompted the ban, he said.

On Tuesday evening Yukon RCMP confirmed the Major Crimes Unit had charged Dennis.

Police are still investigating with the help of RCMP officers from B.C., Police Dog Services and the Watson Lake RCMP detachment.

RCMP held a press conference Monday, only saying “partial” human remains had been found in an industrial area outside Watson Lake.

The remains were discovered around 12:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Police wouldn’t say who discovered the remains or how they were found.

Staff Sgt. Brad Kaeding told reporters the police were withholding some information in case the death turned out to be criminal.

“There are many things we can’t confirm simply because if it turns out to be a major crime, then we do want to make sure the information we get in is not the information that has already been put out,” he said.

Police dog services, search and rescue, and major crimes personnel were sent to Watson Lake.

Yukon’s chief coroner Kirsten Macdonald, who was present at Monday’s press conference, told media an autopsy was scheduled for Wednesday morning.

On top of a forensic pathologist, Yukon Coroner’s Service brought in a forensic anthropologist to construct a biological profile of the victim and analyze any injuries to help determine a cause of death.

“His examination will hopefully provide more information,” she said.

Dennis is scheduled back in court on Aug. 12.

Anybody with information regarding the investigation can contact Watson Lake RCMP at 536–5555.

Contact Pierre Chauvin at pierre.chauvin@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

U Kon Echelon hosts Tour de Haines Junction

U Kon Echelon continued its busy schedule with the Tour de Haines… Continue reading

Melted beeswax, community pottery take centre stage at Arts Underground’s August shows

Two new, and very different, shows will be opening at Whitehorse’s Arts… Continue reading

Northern First Nations call for a major overhaul of mining legislation

The Na-Cho Nyäk Dun, Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in and Vuntut Gwitchin Governments say change is long overdue

Yukon Salmon Sub-Committee recommends First Nations take ‘additional measures’ to conserve Chinook

Recommendation comes as Chinook run on the Yukon River appears unlikely to meet spawning goals

Students prepare for online learning as Yukon University announces fall semester

The school plans to support students who may struggle with remote learning

Changes to federal infrastructure funds allow for COVID-19 flexibility

Announcement allows for rapid COVID-19 projects and expands energy programs to Whitehorse

City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

C/TFN announces Montana Mountain reopening plan

Carcross/Tagish First Nation and the Carcross/Tagish Management Corporation announced the partial reopening… Continue reading

Roberta Joseph reelected as Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in chief

Unofficial results show Joseph with more than double the votes of runner-up

Development incentives considered for three projects

Projects will add 24 rental units to the market

Delegate calls for crosswalk changes to show support for people of colour

Mayor states support for idea, but cautions it could take some time

Whitehorse advises of water system maintenance

Residents on the city’s water system are being advised they may notice… Continue reading

Walkway, signs planned for West Dawson paddlewheel graveyard

Unofficial attraction may get 135-m walkway and interpretive signs, if YESAB application approved

Most Read