LA SALLE -- Manitoba RCMP are in the middle of a mysterious and "very complex" criminal investigation here that has the local rumour mill working overtime.
At the centre of the probe is a home that was surrounded by yellow crime-scene tape for about 48 hours earlier this week and saw a constant police presence. Numerous marked and unmarked police vehicles were coming and going, day and night, while officers interviewed several people in the neighbourhood and appeared to remove several items from the bungalow.
It was a strange sight in this otherwise quiet bedroom community just southwest of Winnipeg in the Rural Municipality of Macdonald.
"We're all kind of wondering what's going on here," a patron at the La Salle River Inn told the Free Press Friday afternoon. She admitted there has been plenty of speculation but little in the way of facts.
The tape went up Monday evening and came down Wednesday afternoon, but the RCMP confirmed Friday their work is far from done. They will only say a criminal investigation is ongoing, no arrests have been made and no charges have been laid. No other details are being released, including the type of investigation.
Justice sources told the Free Press the case is "very complex" and there is plenty of work remaining, but offered little insight into the nature of it.
Neighbours told the Free Press a same-sex couple lives in the home and recently adopted an infant, believed to be an aboriginal girl.
One of the men answered a knock at his front door Friday afternoon but declined to speak with a Free Press reporter.
"We're not willing to talk about it right now," he said before returning inside.
Neighbours say police were conducting door-to-door interviews earlier this week, wanting to know more about the home's residents.
"They were asking things like, 'How are they? How do they strike you?' " one man told the Free Press. "I just told them they were quiet, kept to themselves. They're very shy."
Police told residents they couldn't comment on the specifics of their investigation, but there was "no threat to public safety."
The two men moved into the home about five years ago.
Both commute daily to Winnipeg, where they work full-time jobs. Neighbours believe they adopted the baby, believed to only be a few months old, earlier this spring.
"I saw one of them a few times, walking down the street pushing a stroller," a neighbour said.
Since police searched the home this week, neighbours say they've only seen one of the men return -- the one who answered the door to a reporter.
"We're very curious to know what's going on," another neighbour said.