UPDATE: Alberta RCMP officer involved shooting in Smoky Lake, charges laid

Saddle Lake Cree Nation, Alberta – Alberta RCMP have laid charges following an investigation into the events on Aug. 8, 2022. On Aug. 7, 2022, Saddle Lake RCMP received a report of a domestic disturbance between two unknown individuals. After an investigation, RCMP were able to identify the possible involved parties who were also persons of interest in recent criminal investigations.

For further information regarding the events on Aug. 8, 2022, please refer to ASIRT’s news release that can be found below.

On Aug. 20, 2022, a 21-year-old male, a resident of Enoch Cree Nation, was charged with:

· Flight from police

· Dangerous driving

· Possession of a weapon contrary to order (x3)

· Unauthorized possession of firearm

· Robbery with a firearm

· Theft over $5000

· Pointing a firearm (x2)

Following a judicial hearing, the 21-year-old-male was remanded into custody to speak to bail and is scheduled to attend St. Paul Provincial Court on Sept. 1, 2022.

As this matter is now before the courts, the Alberta RCMP are not able to provide further details.

Due to the ongoing ASIRT investigation, the Alberta RCMP is unable to release the name of the accused.

The Alberta RCMP continue to investigate matters leading up to and including the events on Aug. 8, 2022, excluding the uses of force by officers involved. The Alberta RCMP appreciates the assistance from the public throughout this investigation and ask that anyone who has information and has not already spoken to police is asked to contact Eastern Alberta District RCMP at 780-645-8870.

ASIRT’s investigation continues to examine the circumstances surrounding the uses of force by officers involved. All media inquiries regarding the interactions that resulted in the officers discharging their firearms need to be directed to ASIRT at 780-641-9099.

Background :

Aug. 8, 2022

Alberta RCMP officer involved shooting in Smoky Lake

Saddle Lake Cree Nation, Alta. – On Aug. 8, 2022, at 7:27 a.m., St. Paul RCMP were making efforts to apprehend two individuals who were suspects in several ongoing police investigations. The two suspects were believed to be on Saddle Lake Cree Nation.

St. Paul RCMP located the two suspects in the area of Saddle Lake Cree Nation and an interaction occurred, ultimately leading to a confrontation between police and the suspects that resulted in officers discharging their service weapons in the Smoky Lake area.

One suspect is deceased and the second suspect has been transported to hospital in critical condition. No RCMP officers have reported physical injuries as a result of this incident.
A substantial number of resources were deployed to a large geographical area to provide supports and manage risk to the public throughout this investigation.

St. Paul RCMP continue their original investigations.

BACKGROUND

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) has taken over carriage of the investigation into the circumstances of the officer involved shooting.

The Alberta RCMP believes in processes that seek the facts and it’s important that processes taken to assess the actions of all those involved, including the police, are fair, transparent, and defendable. This is why, as soon as we became aware of this incident, we immediately notified the Director of Law Enforcement and initiated our internal review process.

Independent of ASIRT’s investigation, the Alberta RCMP’s internal review process has been implemented to gather a full account of what took place during this incident. RCMP training, policy, police response, and the duty status of the members involved will be subject to review. The Alberta RCMP is, of course, fully cooperating with ASIRT and will not be commenting further on this incident. All media inquiries about this incident should now be directed to ASIRT at 780-641-9099.

BACKGROUND

Aug. 8, 2022

St. Paul RCMP respond to attempted abduction

Saddle Lake Cree Nation, Alta. – On Aug. 8, 2022, at 7:27 a.m., St. Paul RCMP were dispatched to a call of a possible abduction on Saddle Lake Cree Nation.

Upon Members’ arrival, the two suspects fled from police in a red pickup truck.

Both suspects, one male and one female, have since been located in the area of Smoky Lake and are no longer at large.

ASIRT RELEASE

Investigation into RCMP officer-involved shooting near Smoky Lake continues

On Aug. 8, the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) was directed to investigate a Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officer-involved shooting that happened earlier that day near Smoky Lake.

On Aug. 7, RCMP received a domestic violence complaint. A vehicle was identified as related to this complaint and, at approximately 7:27 a.m. on Aug. 8, RCMP officers located this vehicle. When officers attempted to stop the vehicle, the driver fled. Officers pursued and eventually successfully used a tire deflation device. The driver continued at a slower speed and during this stage of the pursuit, an occupant of the vehicle discharged a firearm in the direction of the pursuing officers.

The driver then went to the Centrex gas station in Smoky Lake. The occupants, one male and one female, exited the vehicle. The male was carrying the firearm, and together they stole a truck that was parked at the gas station. Officers arrived at the gas station, and one officer discharged their firearm at the fleeing vehicle at 7:58 a.m.

Officers continued to pursue the vehicle as it left Smoky Lake. After briefly losing sight of it, officers located the now-abandoned vehicle in dense trees near Range Road 172. RCMP emergency response team and police dog service officers began to track the occupants from this location.

At 10:11 a.m., officers observed the male occupant in a field. An interaction occurred between the officers and the male occupant, and officers discharged their firearms. Officers approached and located both occupants, who were wounded. A firearm was located near the man.

Emergency medical services provided care at the scene. The male was sent to an Edmonton-area hospital by air ambulance. The female was declared deceased by EMS.

ASIRT’s investigation will examine the circumstances surrounding the uses of force. No additional information will be released.

As part of its ongoing investigation, ASIRT is continuing efforts to identify people who may have witnessed aspects of the confrontation between the man and police. ASIRT is asking anyone who may have been in the area and may have witnessed these events and/or may have video to contact investigators at 780-644-1483.

ASIRT’s mandate is to effectively, independently and objectively investigate incidents involving Alberta’s police that have resulted in serious injury or death to any person, as well as serious or sensitive allegations of police misconduct.

ASIRT

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