The discovery of the bodies of up to four infants in a Canadian storage locker is “tragic beyond belief,” police in Winnipeg said Tuesday.
Constable Eric Hofley, spokesman for the Winnipeg Police Department, said at the afternoon news conference that the investigation was ongoing and promised to provide more information Wednesday.
Hofley told reporters that employees at the self-storage facility found the human remains Monday afternoon and immediately called authorities.
“The remains were in a state such as it’s not obvious yet exactly whether we are dealing with four separate remains or three,” he told reporters, according to the Toronto Star. “That will be determined at autopsy.”
The Globe & Mail reports the discovery of the remains is currently being investigated by the child abuse unit but homicide detectives are aware of the investigation and may be called in at some point.
“It’s suspicious. Until autopsies have been completed, whether it is found that someone has deliberately caused the death of one or all of these infants, that remains to be seen,” Hofley said. “It’s just too early in the investigation to say exactly what’s transpired here.”
He declined to name the self-storage company where the bodies were found, but CBC News reports the locker was at a U-Haul facility in the city’s West Alexander neighborhood.
Barrington Francis, who rents a locker at the facility, said he learned about the disturbing scene on the news.
“I didn't expect to get up in the morning and hear that four infants are dead in a storage unit. That's bizarre and I don't know how that even happens,” he said. “How does that even happen, when you sneak four infants into a storage unit and nobody sees it, nobody knows?”
A statement from U-Haul said the company could not provide further details about the grisly discovery, citing the ongoing investigation as the reason.
Hofley said that no matter what the investigation found, charges were likely to be filed in the case.
“Obviously, you're not allowed to store or conceal human remains. That in itself would be a charge,” he said. “Again, until such time as the autopsies have determined what is the cause of this, we won't know what the full extent of the charges may or may not be.”