Fort Assiniboine, Alberta – On Dec. 12, 2021 at about 9:15 p.m., Barrhead RCMP were dispatched to a property on Township Road 632 in the area north of Fort Assiniboine in Woodland County, Alta. for a report of an incident where a suspect rammed through the locked gate at a rural residence and a firearm was discharged by the property owner. The suspect, who was known to the property owner, then fled the scene after the firearm was discharged.
Barrhead RCMP then received two additional calls reporting the suspect was at his residence Fort Assiniboine. Barrhead RCMP attended the residence. When officers went to the door of the residence they were challenged by the suspect who was inside the home. Officers were attempting to reposition and the suspect opened the door and an interaction occurred where two shots were fired at police vehicles by the suspect. Officers did not return fire.
Barrhead RCMP, with the assistance Westlock, Mayerthorpe, Swan Hills and Whitecourt RCMP Detachments, as well as RCMP Police Dog Service, contained the residence. To ensure their safety, the residents in the community were evacuated to the Fort Assiniboine Fire Hall, which is located away from the suspect’s residence.
On Dec. 13, 2021, shortly before 1 a.m., the Alberta RCMP Emergency Response Team (ERT) attended and took control of the scene. ERT arrested the suspect shortly before 4 a.m.
The suspect was examined by Emergency Medical Services on scene for minor injuries and then turned over to police.
No RCMP officers were injured during this incident.
Police remained on the scene and conducted a search of the residence pursuant to a search warrant. Police completed the scene examination at approximately 5 p.m.
Vernie Travis Huff (41) of Fort Assiniboine has been charged with:
· Uttering threats (x2)
· Pointing a firearm (x2)
· Careless use of a firearm
· Discharge firearm with intent
· Assault on a Police Officer
Huff is also facing three additional weapons and property related charges.
Following a judicial hearing, Huff was remanded in custody and is scheduled to appear on Dec. 20, 2021, at Barrhead Provincial Court.
No further charges are being laid in this matter.
The investigation has not located any damage to property caused as a result of the discharge of the suspect’s firearm; however residents are advised to report any potential damage to Barrhead RCMP.
Barrhead RCMP would like to thank the community of Fort Assiniboine for their co-operation and patience, as well as the media for their assistance, during this incident.
As this matter is now before the courts, no further information can be provided.
Dec. 13, 2021
Heavy RCMP presence in hamlet of Fort Assiniboine – Update
Fort Assiniboine – One male has been taken into custody in this incident. RCMP remain in the area as they continue to investigate.
The RCMP thank the public for their patience and are no longer required to shelter in place.
Further details will be provided on the incident when they become available.
Dec. 12, 2021
Heavy RCMP presence in hamlet of Fort Assiniboine
Fort Assiniboine – Alberta RCMP are asking residents of Fort Assiniboine to shelter in place as they investigate reports of several shots fired in the hamlet. Residents have been made aware of the situation by members on scene and by our Operational Communications Centre staff.
There is a heavy police presence surrounding a home in the hamlet and RCMP from Barrhead, Swan Hills, Whitecourt, Mayethorpe, and Westlock will remain in the area until further notice.
RCMP are also asking the public to refrain from posting photos and video on social media.
No further details will be made available until the situation has been resolved.Social Media Sharing Centre
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