Updated: Dangerous person with firearm in La Ronge prompts emergency alert

June 23, 2022
La Ronge, Air Ronge, Lac La Ronge, Saskatchewan

News release

Images

A bullet hole in the the windshield of an RCMP vehicle.

The suspect referred to in the below release was arrested on the evening of June 22, 2022, at a business on Northridge Drive in Saskatoon. An adult female was also arrested. No further charges have been laid.

The RCMP thanks the Saskatoon Police Service for their assistance with this investigation.

Two other individuals wanted in relation to this incident, Celine Charles and Allan Sanderson, have not been located. Information about charges laid in relation to these two individuals can be located here.

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Backgrounder

A firearm was discharged at police, multiple people were arrested and an emergency alert issued after a serious incident in La Ronge on Sunday, June 19, 2022.

Around 11:30 a.m. June 19, two La Ronge RCMP officers were conducting patrols in the community when a black car drove past their vehicle at a high rate of speed on Far Reserve Road. RCMP officers activated their emergency equipment to initiate a traffic stop, but the vehicle continued driving and turned into a driveway at a residence on the 100 block of Far Reserve Road.

The male driver of the vehicle fled the area and one RCMP officer followed – both on foot. The second RCMP officer was outside of the police truck when a second male exited the car with a firearm and discharged in the direction of the police vehicle and officer. The RCMP officer also discharged their firearm. Attached is a photograph of a bullet hole in the responding RCMP vehicle's windshield. A second bullet hit the front radiator.

The two officers moved to a safe location and more La Ronge RCMP officers arrived.

A gathering was happening at the residence where the black car was parked. Multiple people exited the residence and were arrested, including a male and female that investigation determined were also inside the black car and went inside the house after the firearms were discharged. A third female from the black car is unaccounted for.

Given the serious nature of the incident and firearm discharged, a broadcast immediate emergency alert was issued to the public, notifying them of a dangerous person with firearms in the La Ronge area at 12:29 p.m. An alert update with more information was issued at 1:40 p.m. All alert details can be located on the SaskAlert website.

At one point a drone was flying above RCMP officers on scene. While we understand the public's interest in serious incidents, its presence and unknown intent impacted police officer safety. An RCMP officer on scene called out on a loud hailer and a message was included in the emergency alert update asking the operator to stop using their drone. Shortly after these two actions, drone activity in the incident area ceased.

The RCMP Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) responded to assist. As a result of the CIRT's response on scene, around 4:30 p.m. three more people, two males and one female, exited the residence and were arrested.

In total, 17 people were arrested in relation to this incident. As a result of continued investigation, 15 people have been released without charges and determined not to be involved. The investigation is ongoing and we will provide updates as they become available.

The whereabouts of three individuals – the initial male who fled the area on foot, the male who discharged a weapon and a female occupant of the car, have not been located.

Around 4:30 p.m. La Ronge RCMP received a report of two people trying to get inside a residence on Cook Crescent approximately seven kilometres away. RCMP officers responded immediately and after a foot chase, two youths were arrested. Investigation determined this was unrelated to the incident on Far Reserve Road. The youths were not charged.

The emergency alert was cancelled by the Saskatchewan RCMP at 5:35 p.m. June 19 and the public was also notified of the cancellation via our news partners (a media release was issued) and the Saskatchewan RCMP's public website and official Facebook and Twitter channels. The Saskatchewan RCMP continues to ask the public to be vigilant and report any tips and information related to this investigation to police by calling La Ronge RCMP at 306-425-6730, call 310-RCMP or 911 in an emergency. Anyone with information can also call Crime Stoppers anonymously and may be eligible for a reward: 1-800-222-8477.

No RCMP officers were injured during this incident and no other injuries have been reported to police. The Prince Albert RCMP General Investigation Section (GIS), with the assistance of Saskatoon, Yorkton and Regina RCMP GIS, has taken carriage of the investigation, which is ongoing at this time. There will be a continued police presence on Far Reserve Road during the investigation.

Units assisting with the initial response and/or subsequent investigation include: La Ronge RCMP officers and Detachment Services Assistants, Waskesiu RCMP Detachment, Saskatchewan RCMP CIRT, RCMP Police Dog Services, Prince Albert RCMP Traffic Services, Saskatchewan RCMP Forensic Identification Section and conservation officers with the Provincial Protective Services Branch.

"In conjunction with this call for service our La Ronge RCMP officers responded to, there was a Children's Festival happening in the community, garage sales and people enjoying the sunny weekend weather. La Ronge RCMP received an additional six calls for service in the same time period they were managing this dangerous situation," shares S/Sgt. Dean Bridle, La Ronge RCMP Detachment Commander. "Police officers were also following up on tips from the public as a result of the emergency alerts. When an incident is unfolding, there is a lot going on and many risk factors our responding police officers must consider, the scope of which are far-reaching and public and police officer safety must always be top of mind. I am grateful for the kind words our detachment received from members of our community following the conclusion of the incident and thank the people we encountered yesterday who cooperated with police and followed direction. We didn't want anyone to be hurt. We hope the information we are releasing today gives the public more insight into the seriousness of what occurred."

Information about the Saskatchewan RCMP's Critical Incident Response Team is available here.

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