Police and specialized dogs are set to start searching Saskatoon's landfill for a woman who has been missing for more than three years.

Mackenzie Lee Trottier was 22 when last seen in December 2020.

Police have said that during their investigation devices were seized and information has pointed officers to a specific part of the landfill.

The area is about 930 cubic metres in size and one metre deep.

The multi-agency search, which is to include help from Calgary police and RCMP, is slated to last 33 days.

Cam McBride, the deputy chief for Saskatoon police, has said Trottier is considered a missing person until direct information indicates otherwise.

“On one hand, we would like to find nothing, and we’ll continue looking,” McBride told a recent news conference announcing the search.

“On the other hand, we may find her.”

Mackenzie's father, Paul Trottier, has said the family needs answers.

Police set to begin search of #Saskatoon landfill for woman missing since 2020. #MBPoli #Indigenous #MackenzieLeeTrottier

Trottier said his daughter, known as Mack, loves animals, is very bright and helps people in need.

Landfill searches have been in the national spotlight recently, following a push to find the remains of two slain First Nations women in Winnipeg.

Police in Manitoba’s capital have said they believe the remains of Morgan Harris and Marcedes Myran were taken to a landfill north of the city in 2022.

Winnipeg police rejected the idea of a search, in part because of the potential danger from toxic substances and the large volume of material at the landfill.

After facing public protest, the federal and Manitoba governments committed in March a total of $40 million to conduct a search.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 1, 2024.

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