Two Alberta Mounties face manslaughter charges in shooting death of man in car

Two Alberta Mounties face manslaughter charges in shooting death of man in car

EDMONTON — Two RCMP officers who were charged in the shooting death of a 31-year-old man in northern Alberta two years ago are now facing manslaughter charges.

Cpl. Randy Stenger and Const. Jessica Brown of the Whitecourt RCMP detachment were arrested on June 5 and were each charged with one count of criminal negligence causing death.

The court registry now says the officers are charged with manslaughter.

No one from Alberta Justice returned a request for comment, but the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) released a statement on the upgraded charges Thursday.

The police watchdog said responsibility for the case was transferred to prosecutors with the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General at the request of the Alberta Crown Prosecution Service.

“After consultation with the Ontario Crown, on Sept. 3, 2020, a replacement Information was sworn jointly charging both officers with the offence of manslaughter,” said the statement.

“The original Information charging both officers with criminal negligence causing death was withdrawn at the request of the Crown.”

The ASIRT statement said no additional information would be provided because the case is before the courts; the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General also declined comment.

ASIRT has previously said that Clayton Crawford died from multiple gunshot wounds inside a car after a confrontation with police on July 3, 2018.

The Mounties had been investigating another shooting the day before at a home in Valhalla Centre, about 65 kilometres northwest of Grande Prairie.

ASIRT said the officers were looking for a witness or possible victim in that case when they discovered a man sleeping in the driver’s seat of a vehicle parked at a rest stop near Whitecourt.

During the confrontation, the vehicle was “put into motion” and one officer fired a service pistol while the other discharged a carbine rifle, the agency said.

“The vehicle left the rest stop, crossed the highway and entered a ditch a short distance away,” said a news release at the time.

ASIRT executive director Susan Hughson told a news conference on June 8 that Crown prosecutors were consulted for their opinion and her team determined charges were warranted.

Hughson said it was the first time in the Alberta agency’s history that a police-involved shooting resulting in a death led to criminal charges against officers.

Alberta RCMP confirmed Thursday that both officers were suspended with pay after the initial charges were laid.

Stenger, 43, has 12 years of service with the RCMP and 29-year old Brown has four years, according to the police force.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 10, 2020.

Colette Derworiz, The Canadian Press

RCMP

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

Just Posted

Two people dead after plane flying from Rocky Mountain House crashes

The Transportation Safety Board will be investigating

Annual Chili Cook Off raises money for Red Deer Hospice Society

The key to making a great chili is preparing the sauce first,… Continue reading

Central Alberta Film Festival set to return Oct. 14-17

Central Albertans will be able to spend four days at the movies… Continue reading

City of Red Deeer seeks ‘long-term, stable’ funding

The City of Red Deer supported the City of Edmonton in its… Continue reading

Montreal demonstrators demand climate justice a year after Greta Thunberg speech

MONTREAL — Demonstrators gathered in downtown Montreal on Saturday to protest planetary… Continue reading

Officials report just one active COVID case in Nova Scotia, no new case Saturday

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia is reporting no new cases of COVID-19, leaving… Continue reading

Demonstration in Fredericton as private abortion clinic to lose its doctor

FREDERICTON — A doctor who runs a private abortion clinic in Fredericton… Continue reading

A mind-boggling tale of idiocy

Some people have the IQ of a piece of second-hand furniture

Wilkinson aims to be B.C. premier after cabinet role, working as doctor and lawyer

The B.C. election is Wilkinson’s first as the Liberal party leader

First Nations police services look to throne speech pledge for higher, stable funding

‘I won’t be happy until I hear two words: royal assent’

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $50 million Lotto Max jackpot

Jackpot for the next draw will grow to approximately $55 million

Tiny airborne particles may pose a big coronavirus problem

NEW YORK — At a University of Maryland lab, people infected with… Continue reading

Most Read