Two O’Chiese First Nation men are facing attempted murder charges after a Monday shooting spree that left four people wounded.
The violence follows the shooting by RCMP of a man on O’Chiese First Nation last Saturday. A 24-year-old man who police wanted to speak to about a complaint that someone was jumping on cars came at responding officers with what appeared to be an axe.
During the confrontation, an officer fired several shots at the man, who died from his injuries. Alberta Serious Incident Response Team is investigating, as it does in all cases where someone is killed or injured by police.
Rocky Mountain House RCMP Staff Sgt. Carl Dinsdale called Monday’s violence a “nightmarish situation for everyone involved, including the police, but most importantly for the members of the community.”
“I’m thankful that there was no loss of life during this event, and grateful for the quick response by members from Rocky Mountain House and surrounding detachments, as well as local EMS, RCMP Air Services, Police Dog Services and the Emergency Response Team.
“It was the timely response by all these members, units and partner emergency services that was the key to the quick apprehension of these two suspects without further injury or loss of life.”
About 5:10 p.m. on Monday, Rocky Mountain House RCMP got a call about a man shot at a residence on Sunchild First Nation, 60 km northwest of the town.
Less than 30 minutes later, police got a report that a second man had been shot at the Marketplace at nearby O’Chiese First Nation.
A third shooting call came in at 5:55 p.m. Police were told that two men had been shot at an O’Chiese residence.
Four men, aged 18, 19, 20 and 34 were taken by ambulance to Rocky Mountain House hospital. The 19- and 34-year-olds were taken by STARS to hospitals in Edmonton and Calgary. The 34-year-old remained in serious but stable condition on Wednesday.
Rocky Mountain House RCMP and officers from neighboring detachments, along with the RCMP Emergency Response Team, Air Services and Police Dog Services, were called in to assist.
With help from the O’Chiese Fire Department, residents were warned to shelter in place.
Police said both suspects had travelled together on an ATV to the scene of the first shooting. After their victim was shot, they stole his ATV and continued their rampage.
One suspect was tracked by an RCMP helicopter and arrested by RCMP members on the ground.
The dog unit picked up a scent near one of the scenes and a second suspect was tracked down and arrested.
Keith Beaverbones, 28, and Zachary Yellowface, 19, have each been charged with four counts of attempted murder.
Yellowface is also facing charges of unauthorized possession of a firearm, possession of a firearm knowing that possession is unauthorized, possession of a prohibited firearm, theft of a motor vehicle, flight from police and resisting arrest.
Both Beaverbones and Yellowface remain in custody and were due in Rocky Mountain House provincial court on Wednesday.