Local briefs – December 30

A man charged with attempting to kill another man during an alleged extortion was remanded in custody on Tuesday.

Suspect to stay in custody

A man charged with attempting to kill another man during an alleged extortion was remanded in custody on Tuesday.

Jusuf Izairi, 31, returns to Red Deer provincial court on Jan. 6 to enter a plea on several charges, including attempted murder.

It’s alleged that sometime between Dec. 13 and 23, Izairi attempted to murder the man by using a restricted firearm.

It’s also alleged the accused robbed the man using violence, uttered threats to force the man to withdraw money using a bank card and confined the man against his will.

Izairi is also charged with failing to comply with a previous court order by being in possession of a restricted firearm.

Legal Aid Society of Alberta lawyer Murray Shack told court that the accused needs time to seek a legal aid lawyer.

Izairi was denied bail by a justice of the peace earlier.

Collision report released

Drivers crashing into the back of vehicles ahead of them were the most common type of collision within Red Deer city limits during 2007.

The city’s Engineering Department has just released a detailed study that will become the baseline for an annual report on collision statistics for Red Deer.

Comparing statistics from 2007 with the previous year, traffic engineer Rebecca Clark found an increase of almost 12 per cent for a total of 4,210 crashes on public streets and public parking lots in Red Deer.

Rear-end collisions accounted for 24 per cent of the total, closely followed by drivers backing into other units at 18 per cent.

Red Deer’s traffic trends are affected by many factors, such as rapid growth and a young population. The report reflects these factors and highlights areas identified in the 2007-2010 Traffic Safety Action Plan, which aimed to reduce the number of casualties in traffic collisions through five key target areas.

City officials and RCMP believe publicizing collision figures will play a role in reducing collisions, Clark said on Tuesday.

Engineering, enforcement and education form the three corners of collision prevention, she said. While city engineers and police have been working together within their roles, the Engineering Department believes further gains can be made by informing drivers of their duties and responsibilities while negotiating city streets, she said.

In a news release issued on Tuesday, RCMP Const. Al Nicholson said drivers sometimes take the task too lightly.

“If drivers pay attention and slow down, they will not only help reduce the number of collisions, they will also help save lives and reduce injuries,” said Nicholson.

Police have seen a reduction in collisions since the city released its Traffic Safety Action Plan, which included studying statistics and publishing results, he said.

Statistics for 2008 are now being compiled and should be available within the next few months, said Clark.

Concession proposals wanted

Proposals are being sought for a concession to be placed on the main floor of the City of Red Deer’s new parkade.

The size and scope of the concession will depend on what the winning proposal brings to the table, says project manager Darin Sceviour. It is to be located in the northwest corner of the parkade, he said.

Details of the process are available from the purchasing section at city hall.

Expected to be finished in the spring of 2010, the parkade adds three parking levels with 400 parking stalls above the downtown transit terminal. The parkade will feature an arched roof covered in vegetation, Sceviour said on Tuesday.

Earth-friendly roofs are becoming more popular as features on urban buildings because they capture water and produce oxygen, he said.

Once complete, the parkade will become a functional piece of art within the city core, he said.

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