Local briefs – September 25

Advance voting for Catholic and public school board trustees and city council is coming up in Red Deer.

Advance polls in Red Deer

Advance voting for Catholic and public school board trustees and city council is coming up in Red Deer.

Voters will be able to cast their vote on one of five days — Saturday, Oct. 2, Friday, Oct. 8, Saturday, Oct. 9, Friday, Oct. 15, and Saturday, Oct. 16. The vote takes place from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Advance voting takes place at one location — Recreation Centre inside the Sportsman Room. The address is 4501 47A Ave.

Specialized equipment will be on hand for those visually impaired. This service is available at the advance vote only.

There are special provisions for those unable to attend a voting station or an advance voting station. People who are housebound can have election staff attend their home during the hours an advance voting station is open. Those who are out of town during the election or advance vote can cast their ballot by special ballot. Requests can be made in writing, by telephone, by fax, in person or by email. The returning officer must receive the completed ballot before close of voting stations on election day.

Call city’s Legislative and Governance Services Department for information at 403-342-8132 or go online at www.reddeer.ca/election.

Election day is Oct. 18, with voting to take place from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Anti-racism session Monday

Information about a project aimed at erasing racism and discrimination will be made available during information sessions to take place in Red Deer on Monday.

The Central Alberta Diversity Association, with support from Citizenship and Immigration Canada, has set up a 10-month pilot project, with scope to accept 25 participants.

Participants in the Community Engagement Project for Diversity will learn how to assess organizations for competency in relation to diversity, develop diversity-friendly workplace processes, prepare for and resolve issues in employing a diverse workforce and take action to reduce the factors that contribute to exclusion, says executive director Richard Banville.

Businesses, governments, non-profit groups and individuals are invited to take part. Interested people are asked to contact the Central Alberta Diversity Association office to select from one of the three information sessions. The sessions are set for 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m., noon to 1 p.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. on the lower level of 4936 Ross Street. Email cadassoc@telus.net or call 403-340-2143 to learn more.

Man hurt in industrial accident

A 55-year-old Ponoka man was seriously injured at around 8:15 a.m. on Friday at a worksite approximately 20 km north of Rimbey.

A large chain entered a truck and hit the man, said STARS spokesman Cam Heke. STARS got the call shortly before 8:30 a.m. and arrived on scene, transporting the man to Edmonton.

Harold Gold, a safety officer for Bonavista Energy Trust Ltd., said workers were moving an item off site when the man was injured. The incident happened at the Bonavista Energy Trust Ltd. Westerose tank site.

The man is a trucker working with Road Train Oilfield Transport on contract for Bonavista Energy Trust Ltd., said Gold.

The man was transported by STARS ambulance to the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton in critical condition. Gold said Bonavista Energy Trust is investigating, as is Alberta Workplace Health and Safety.

Two more charged in murder

Two more people have been charged with second-degree murder in the death of a 45-year-old Rocky Mountain House area man last Saturday.

Darcy John Lightfoot, 30 and Evan Ernest Foureyes, 21, both of the O’Chiese Reserve First Nation, will appear in Rocky provincial court on Wednesday to face charges. They are both in custody.

They are charged along with two O’Chiese women who reserved their pleas on second-degree murder charges when they appeared in Red Deer provincial court Thursday.

Jenny Olivia Beaverbones, 26, and Malvina Jean Beaverbones, 36, return to court on Wednesday in Red Deer to make an election.

Both are charged separately in connection with the death of Gordon Marlice Strawberry, 45, of the O’Chiese who was found unconscious last Saturday morning outside a reserve residence.

Drug smuggler sentenced

A woman caught smuggling drugs into Bowden Institution was given a community-based sentence on Friday.

Yvonne Christine Allen, 24, of Kelowna, B.C., pleaded guilty earlier to bringing marijuana, hashish oil and 25 tablets of morphine to the prison on Oct. 5, 2008.

Provincial court Judge Jim Mitchell handed her a sentence of two years less a day during which the first 10 months will be served under 24-hour house arrest.

The remainder will be served under a nightly curfew. She must also perform 120 hours of community service and surrender a sample of her DNA. Allen is permitted to venture out to work, medical appointments and shopping to a maximum of six hours a week.

The drugs were valued at between $5,000 and $7,500 in prison.

Judge blasts drug dealer

A drug dealer was labelled the “ultimate parasite” and an “evil bacillus” in Red Deer provincial court on Friday before he was led away to start a federal prison sentence.

Ryan Wesley Mack, 26, was jailed for four and a half years after pleading guilty to conspiracy to traffic in cocaine, stemming from a Red Deer RCMP drug bust in July 2008.

Mack was credited with two and a half years in pre-trial custody, meaning he still has two years to serve. He is prohibited from owning or possessing guns and ammunition for 10 years.

“People like you are the ultimate parasite in this community,” Judge Jim Mitchell told Mack.

“You are an evil bacillus that infects the best of our community. You look for young, impressionable people” to prey on, the judge added.

The sentence had been worked out between federal Crown prosecutor Craig Kallal and defence lawyer Jake Chadi of Edmonton.

Several other charges including trafficking in drugs, possession of the proceeds of crime, careless storage or use of a firearm and unauthorized possession of a firearm were withdrawn.

Mack and two other men were charged in July 2008 following a six-month RCMP investigation.

RCMP seized more than $20,000 cash, a nine-mm handgun and a large stash of cocaine after searching two Red Deer homes.

Homes in Clearview and in Oriole Park were searched. In addition to the drugs and cash, RCMP also seized four vehicles.

More than $13,000 in cash, which couldn’t be proven to be the proceeds of crime, was returned to Mack. The money will go to Chadi for his fees.

In addition, one of the vehicles was returned to Mack because it belonged to a woman not involved in the crime. The other vehicles are in police custody.

Keith Elliott Shingleton, 27, of Red Deer will appear in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench on Oct. 22 on single counts of conspiracy to traffic, trafficking, possession for the purpose of trafficking, money laundering, possession of proceeds of crime and possession of a narcotic.


Decision reserved in grizzly lawsuit

CALGARY — A Calgary judge has reserved decision on a civil lawsuit filed by two men who were attacked by a grizzly bear 15 years ago at a Lake Louise campsite.

Lawyers for the federal government and the two Australian men made final submissions to Justice Jed Hawco on Friday.

The men say there weren’t sufficient warnings about a possible attack. The lawyer for the government says that building a case on attacks being foreseeable is wrong, because attacks are so rare.

The two men were sleeping in a tent in the campground when they were attacked.

The judge says he hopes to have a decision within the next month.

House arrest for equipment thief

A Sylvan Lake man has received a community-based sentence after pleading guilty to thefts and frauds involving more than $100,000 in oilfield tools and equipment.

Joseph Henry Clarkin, 56, received a nine-month conditional sentence that includes house arrest and 200 hours of community service work.

Clarkin was also fined about $5,000.

He pleaded guilty recently in provincial court to single counts of fraud valued at more than $5,000, two counts of fraud valued at less than $5,000, and single counts of possession of property obtained by crime, and theft of property valued at more than $5,000.

Restitution has been completed.

Clarkin was the former manager of Big Country Energy Services.

Cpl. Kevin Halwa of Sylvan Lake RCMP said police conducted a two-and-a-half-year investigation. Police started their probe in 2008 after a complaint that tools were missing along with an enclosed cargo trailer and a covered snowmobile trailer.

Investigation revealed numerous home improvements had been performed including construction of a solarium, cabinets and painting.