Bed shortage means no mental reviews done yet on accused Edmonton attacker

A man accused of attempted murder after a police officer was hit by a car and stabbed is still waiting for psychiatric assessments due to a critical bed shortage at an Alberta mental hospital.

Abdulahi Hasan Sharif was charged after a speeding car drove through a barrier at a Canadian Football League game in Edmonton on Sept. 30 and hit a police officer.

The driver got out, pulled out a large knife and began stabbing Const. Mike Chernyk.

Four pedestrians were hit and injured hours later when the driver of a cube van with police cars in pursuit sped down Jasper Avenue, one of Edmonton’s main streets. Sharif is also charged with dangerous driving.

Sharif, who was approved for two psychiatric assessments, appeared in court Wednesday on a closed-circuit camera from the Edmonton Remand Centre.

Court heard that he has yet to be seen because there is a critical bed shortage at Alberta Hospital.

“Due to the bed shortage at the hospital where they conduct the forensic assessments, they weren’t able to accommodate Mr. Sharif to conduct the criminal responsibility assessment yet,” his lawyer, Karanpal Aujla, said outside court. “It is somewhat concerning, considering the circumstances.

“I’d rather have them do an assessment that is properly done and well-detailed without rushing.”

Sharif was scheduled to be seen by doctors on Thursday, although Alberta Health Services has asked for an additional 30 days to complete the assessments.

He is to appear in court again on Jan. 12.

Note to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version had the lawyer’s last name spelling incorrectly.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole and Premier Jason Kenney participated in a livestream on Oct. 17, 2020. (File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)
O’Toole and Kenney sit side-by-side for livestream without wearing masks

NOBLEFORD, Alta. — Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole praised Alberta Premier Jason Kenney… Continue reading

Commuters wearing face masks to help curb the spread of the coronavirus walk out from a subway station in Beijing, Monday, Oct. 19, 2020. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)
China’s economy accelerates as virus recovery gains strength

China was the first major economy to return to growth

Shipping containers are seen at the Fairview Cove Container Terminal in Halifax on Friday, Aug. 25, 2017. Statistics Canada says wholesale sales edged up 0.3 per cent in August to advance for a fourth consecutive month, though at a much slower pace. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2020 file photo the Glass Fire burns a hillside above Silverado Trail in St. Helena, Calif. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
‘First guys out:’ western Canadian air tanker fleet busy despite drop in wildfires

RED DEER, Alta. — A family-run company providing air-tanker support to control… Continue reading

Los Angeles Galaxy goalkeeper Jonathan Klinsmann (33) stops a shot from Vancouver Whitecaps’s Lucas Cavallini during the second half of an MLS soccer match, Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Koreniuk’s goal helps Galaxy beat Whitecaps, snap skid

Vancouver has lost five of its last seven games

In this file photo, Mike Weir, of Canada, hits out of the bunker on hole one during the 2017 Canadian Open at the Glen Abbey golf club, in Oakville, Ont., on Friday, July 28, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Weir settles for second as Mickelson wins to go 2 for 2 on senior tour

PGA Tour Champions’ stop at The Country Club of Virginia

In this April 12, 2019, file photo, Vasiliy Lomachenko celebrates defending his WBA/WBO lightweight titles after knocking out Anthony Crolla, in Los Angeles. Lomachenko fights Teofimo Lopez on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, in Las Vegas. Boxing fans should be thankful. They’re getting a quality fight _ and they’re getting it for free.(AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
Lopez upsets Lomachenko to unify lightweight titles

LAS VEGAS — Teofimo Lopez dominated early and finished strong Saturday night… Continue reading

Patrons enjoy the patio at the Revival House restaurant in Stratford, Ont., Friday, Aug.10, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Robins
Restaurants near virus hot spots weigh safety-vs-profit with locals-only dining

Some southern Ontario restaurants are making the tough financial choice to bar… Continue reading

Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam takes part during a press conference during the COVID pandemic in Ottawa on Friday, Oct. 16, 2020.  As parts of Canada face a new round of COVID-19-related restrictions, Canada's chief public health officer is urging Canadians to continue making a "collective effort" to tackle the pandemic.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Chief public health officer calls for continued ‘collective effort’ against COVID-19

TORONTO — Canada’s chief public health officer is urging residents to continue… Continue reading

Employee Sophia Lovink shows off a bag of merchandise in Toronto on Thursday, June 11, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Canada gets C-average grade on 2nd year of cannabis legalization

Cannabis Council of Canada releases report card on federal government and legalization

Most Read