RCMP officers acted reasonably in central Alberta shootings, says investigator

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Teams has determined RCMP officers acted reasonably in central Alberta shootings in 2017.

The agency investigated the circumstances surrounding two officer-involved shootings that occurred during a continuing event on Oct. 13, 2017.

The first incident resulted in a minor gunshot wound to a 20-year-old woman and the second resulted in serious injuries to a 20-year-old man.

Around 9:14 a.m. on Oct. 13, 2017, police were called to a scene where they were told a man was threatened with a large knife.

After running the suspect vehicle’s licence plate and contacting the registered owner, police determined it was stolen from the Didsbury area that morning.

The man and woman driving the stolen truck picked up another man in Sundre at 1:30 p.m.

A lengthy chase occurred, with the suspect vehicle eventually becoming immobilized.

“In the entire course of these events, the conduct of the three individuals could objectively demonstrate the danger and significant risk to public,” a press release said.

“Based on the actions of these three individuals, it is only good fortune that no civilian, nor police officer, was seriously injured or killed.”

One of the men was shot twice, one bullet shattering his left forearm and the other becoming lodged in his spine, resulting in permanent paralysis.

“Although the injury is believed to have occurred by the time of the attempted flight with the assistance of the passenger, based on all the evidence, it was subjectively and objectively reasonable to resort to lethal force to prevent further flight,” the agency said.

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Teams’ mandate is to investigate incidents involving Alberta’s police that have resulted in serious injury or death.

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