Saskatchewan RCMP officer rammed by suspect; assault on police officers up 29% over five years

October 25, 2023
Saskatchewan, Saskatchewan

News release


A photo of the damaged police vehicle.

On October 23, 2023 just before 7 p.m., an officer from Onion Lake RCMP observed several suspicious persons operating a side-by-side outside a business in Onion Lake.

The officer pulled up to them and activated their emergency lights. The side-by-side suddenly accelerated and rammed the officer's police vehicle. The officer was not physically injured. The side-by-side fled and was later found damaged and abandoned less than a kilometre away.

Shortly after, officers located and arrested an adult male nearby.

33-year-old Josh McLaren from Lloydminster is charged with:

  • one count, assault on police officer with weapon, Section 270.01(2), Criminal Code;
  • one count, flight from peace officer, Section 320.17, Criminal Code;
  • one count, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, Section 320.13(1), Criminal Code;
  • one count, wear disguise with intent, Section 351(2), Criminal Code;
  • one count, failure to stop after accident, Section 320.16(1), Criminal Code; and
  • one count, operation while impaired, Section 320.14(1)(a), Criminal Code.

McLaren is scheduled to appear in North Battleford Provincial Court on October 26, 2023. Onion Lake RCMP continues to investigate.

This incident is one of multiple recent assaults against Saskatchewan RCMP officers. They include:

  • On October 6, 2023, Pierceland RCMP attempted observed a stolen vehicle on Big Island Lake Cree Territory. They attempted a traffic stop. The vehicle fled and rammed a police vehicle while doing so. The officers were not injured. A 24-year-old male has been charged with assaulting a police officer with a weapon and other charges in relation to this incident.
  • On September 30, 2023, La Ronge RCMP received a report of an unwanted individual at a residence in La Ronge. Officers located the individual, who resisted arrest, assaulted a police officer and attempted to unholster their conducted energy device. The officer reported non-life-threatening injuries. An adult male has been charged two counts of assaulting a police officer with a weapon and other charges in relation to this incident.
  • On September 18, 2023, officers from Saskatchewan RCMP's Crime Reduction Team observed a stolen vehicle on Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation. They attempted a traffic stop. The vehicle fled and rammed a police vehicle while doing so. A male has been charged and is on warrant in relation to this incident.
  • "Assaults on police officers have increased 29% in five years in Saskatchewan RCMP jurisdiction," says A/Commr. Rhonda Blackmore, commanding officer of Saskatchewan RCMP. "I'm committed to transparency, and to painting an accurate picture of policing in Saskatchewan. The statistics show that our officers are at increasing risk of being assaulted while doing their job – keeping our communities safe. I'm proud of the dedication they have to community safety, even as risk to their personal safety increases."


  • Yearly assaults against police officer statistics are as follows: 2018 – 362 incidents; 2019 – 390 incidents; 2020 – 435 incidents; 2021 – 414 incidents; 2022 – 471 incidents.
  • Of the 471 incidents that occurred last year, 289 occurred in Saskatchewan RCMP's North District, 118 in Central District and 64 in South District.
  • Of the 471 incidents that occurred last year, 377 were assaults on police officers, 83 were assaults on police officer causing bodily harm/assaults on police officer with a weapon, eight were disarming a police officer and three were aggravated assault on police officer.
  • From January 1 to September 30, 2023 (the most recent statistics available), there were 375 assault against police officer incidents in Saskatchewan RCMP jurisdiction.

*Please note that these statistics are representative of reports received within Saskatchewan RCMP jurisdiction.


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