RCMP continue to investigate a shooting at a rural residence that left one person dead and another injured near Springbrook on Monday afternoon.
The initial investigation has indicated that the deceased broke into the residence and an altercation occurred with the homeowner, police confirmed Tuesday afternoon.
In a statement Monday night, Blackfalds RCMP said a complaint was received about a residential break and enter in progress off C & E Trail at 3:11 p.m the same day. When police arrived, officers discovered the homeowner injured, and another man in the residence fatally shot.
Ken Wigmore, with Red Deer/Lacombe Rural Community Crime Watch, said whatever happened at that rural residence on Monday, the memories will be tough to shake and that family may be fearful for some time to come.
He said crime seems to go in waves in rural areas.
“I wish I had the magic answer,” said Wigmore, who is also a Lacombe County councillor.
“They are forever stealing trucks and cars and motorcycles, stuff like that.”
On Tuesday, police confirmed the homeowner, who was being treated for non-life threatening injuries, was released from the hospital.
The RCMP Major Crime’s Unit is continuing with the investigation including examination of the scene near C & E Trail and Township Road 374 in Red Deer County with the RCMP Forensic Identification Services and interviewing witnesses. Police said updates will be provided when further details can be shared.
Red Deer County councillor Jean Bota said she would like to know more about what happened, but will let police do their work and hopefully a report will be available soon.
Bota said safety has been a concern for rural residents, and the county is waiting to see how it can respond – once more is known.
“If there is something we can assist with, we do like to be made aware of it. We’ve been really involved with our crime watch groups. We’ve been really proactive,” Bota said.
Bota said more crime is being reported to local RCMP detachments. She has also heard that the severity of the type of crime, and damage to property, is also getting worse across the province.
Wigmore said people will protect their homes and families by installing security systems, putting up gates and getting dogs, but that doesn’t stop criminals from casing properties.
“We always advocate to people, if they come in the front door, go out the back. There isn’t anything that’s worth your life.”
He said in the last two years people’s interest in the Red Deer/Lacombe crime watch group has unfortunately dropped off. For some, it’s because they haven’t been impacted by crime. For others who have been victims of crime, they have just given up because they don’t see the benefit.
“It’s a sad thing. People need to stay vigilant, but we all get lax don’t we.”
He said discussion leading up to the municipal election will show if addressing rural crime continues to be a top priority for voters.