Alberta police look at bank, phone records in search for missing Nunavut man
“Please phone me and tell me you’re OK"
Leduc RCMP are using their powers under Alberta’s Missing Persons Act to gain access to phone and bank records in their effort to locate Peter Kakolak, a Kugluktuk man who went missing near the Edmonton International Airport April 30.
The act, which came into force in 2012, allows police to look at a long list of records through a court order, including cell phone and text messages, GPS tracking systems, surveillance videos, financial and travel information.
Usually those kinds of records are inaccessible to police unless a criminal act has been committed or suspected.
Kakolak, 55, was last seen on the morning of April 30 leaving the Travelodge hotel that is located near the Edmonton airport in Leduc.
He and his partner, Alice Algona, had been on holiday in Edmonton for about 10 days.
He was supposed to fly back to Nunavut May 2, but did not show up for his flight.
Algona, who is now back in Kugluktuk, says she’s so distraught she’s barely eaten or slept.
“I think he’s still around. I know he is. I love Peter. I want him to come home,” said Algona who’s known Kakolak for 26 years and was good friends with him before they became a couple.
“Please phone me and tell me you’re okay,” she said, hoping he might get the message. “I need you. I want you here. Everybody is missing you. The whole town misses you. I love you so.”
Algona said she’s disappointed with local RCMP members who tell her to call the Leduc detachment if she wants information on the case.
“Maybe they could call Leduc police,” Algona said. “I can’t afford to call Leduc police all the time. It costs me money. They’re not helping me.”
Algona said Kakolak’s niece got a call from Kakolak on May 3, three days after Algona last saw him and one day after he was reported missing.
Leduc RCMP Cpl. Branden McCarney said that since the missing person report was issued to media and to the airlines, several tips have come in describing possible sightings. RCMP members have been interviewing the tipsters, he said.
The investigation into Kakolak’s whereabouts is continuing, McCarney said, and police are treating it seriously, as they would any other suspicious disappearance.
“All of our missing person cases are a high priority in this detachment,” McCarney said, “meaning the file never sits on someone’s desk until that guy comes back. It’s passed on every day.”
He said they’ve engaged the help of the Missing Person’s Unit, located in the Alberta RCMP headquarters in Edmonton, for help in securing court orders and other legal assistance.
Police describe Kakolak as five feet, eight inches tall, about 146 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes.
Anyone with information about Kakolak is encouraged to call Leduc RCMP at 780-980-7200, 780-980-7231, 780-886-0672 or Crimestoppers at: 1-800-222-8477.