RCMP will attend a Wednesday meeting with residents of Inglewood, where a recent murder has highlighted problems in the community.
Homeowner Marlo Ruttan said RCMP Supt. Brian Simpson met with him last week, a day after Ruttan went public with frustrations over the seeming inability of police to put a stop to thefts and drug traffic in the area. Ruttan said he suggested a public meeting to discuss problems and Simpson agreed.
Simpson could not be reached for comment on Monday.
Ruttan has gone door to door and handed out about 220 flyers advertising the meeting in the last few days and almost all homeowners were supportive of the gathering arranged at the Red Deer Lodge beginning at 7 p.m. in the Waskasoo A room.
“I would say maybe six of them didn’t have any comment. A majority of them said, ‘Yep, we’ll be there.”
Many residents told him they have been victimized by thieves and some were so upset by all the criminal activity they want to leave.
“Six to eight people said they just wanted to sell their homes and get out of the area. They are just fed up with all the crime going on and the traffic.”
Ruttan has complained to police nearly a dozen times about suspicious activity in the back alley of his Imbeau Close home. Vehicles frequently park in the alley so passengers can quickly make their way to a suspected drug house on Ibbotson Close.
Ibbotson was the scene of an early morning shooting on April 5 that took the life of 29-year-old Brandon Neil Prevey. He was sitting in a vehicle parked on the side of the street when he was shot.
No arrests have been made so far. Police are investigating whether drugs or gangs were involved.
Ruttan said the amount of support he has gotten at doors and comments posted on the Red Deer Advocate website are proof there is a serious issue that must be addressed.
“That just shows that there is a problem in the area. It’s not just one individual barking up the tree.”
Ruttan feels so strongly about this cause he is covering the $350 cost himself of renting the hotel meeting room. He’s glad to do it if it helps, said the realtor.
“It’s a shot in the dark, but what other actions do we have?”
Mayor Morris Flewwelling and local MP Earl Dreeshen have been invited to the meeting, but Ruttan has not heard back from their offices yet.