Thursday, May 29, 2014

Policing in Alberta to May 29, 2014

Liquor store robbery in Grande Prairie
Lethbridge man charged with sexual assault of young boy
$50,000 Cocaine Seizure in Lethbridge 
Vandalism/Mischief in Picture Butte
Phone scammer impersonating RCMP officer
Calgary fire results in assault charge and arson investigation
Poisoning suspected in deaths of dogs in Calgary
Indecent acts at Airdrie Walmart

Liquor store robbery in Grande Prairie
Liquor store robbery suspect
Grande Prairie RCMP are asking for the public's assistance in identifying a suspect involved in a robbery which occurred around 10:20 p.m. on May 22, 2014 at a liquor store located on 100 Street and 82nd Avenue. An undisclosed amount of money was taken by the suspect who fled the store in an unknown direction. The employee was not harmed as a result of the event.

The male suspect is described as:
  • Caucasian
  • approximately 5'8" in height
  • 18 - 19 years old
  • very light blonde hair
  • slender build
and wearing:
  • a grey toque with a white band around it
  • black hoodie
  • shirt with white marking on the front
  • faded blue jeans
RCMP utilized the Police Dog Service and Forensic Identification Section.

Lethbridge man charged with sexual assault of young boy

Lethbridge Regional Police have charged a 39-year-old man in connection with an incident where a young boy was sexually assaulted in a play area at a city restaurant.

On May 25, 2014 police responded to a report that a six-year-old boy had been assaulted while playing the in the children’s play area at McDonalds along the 200 block of 3 Avenue South. Investigation determined that the boy was approached by a male and touched inappropriately.

The subject was identified and on May 26 attended the police station where he was subsequently charged.

Harley Rhett Gabel, 39, of Lethbridge, is charged with one count each of sexual assault and sexual interference. He has been released from custody with a number of conditions, including prohibitions from attending within 100 meters of any public park, public swimming area, day care, school or other area where children are known to frequent and being employed or volunteering in any capacity where he would be a position of trust or authority over any child under the age of 16.

Gabel is scheduled to appear in court June 23.

$50,000 Cocaine Seizure in Lethbridge

More than $50,000 worth of cocaine was seized from a 21-year-old Lethbridge woman by Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT). The drug seizure marks the Lethbridge team’s largest in almost a year. ALERT Lethbridge, an integrated team made up Lethbridge Regional Police Service and RCMP members, made the cocaine seizure in the early morning hours of May 27th. The accused is believed to have ties to a local drug ring.

Brittany Twigg, 21, was arrested in a vehicle stop in the area of University Drive and Mic Mac Boulevard West. She was found in possession of 83 grams of powder cocaine and 500 grams of crack cocaine, worth an estimated $58,420. Twigg faces to charges of possession for the purpose of trafficking.

The bust is the ALERT Lethbridge team’s largest since July 2013 when 1.8 kilograms of cocaine was seized in a series of five search warrants.

Vandalism/Mischief in Picture Butte

Picture Butte RCMP are requesting the public's assistance in solving the following investigation.

Between 10:45 PM on May 26 2014 and early morning on May 27 2014 an unknown person/persons spray painted a fence with red spray paint along Highway 25 West of Picture Butte. The fence is located on a local farmers property. The message writing on the fence related to farming operations of the owner.

Anyone with information regarding the mischief to the fence or person responsible for this crime is requested to contact the Picture Butte Detachment at 403-732-4449 or Crime stoppers, toll free at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

Phone scammer impersonating RCMP officer

The RCMP Serious & Organized Crime Unit in Edmonton is warning the public to be wary of telephone calls where the caller identifies himself as a serving member of the RCMP, calling to collect unpaid taxes or fines.  The scammers threaten jail time, legal action and use coercive language to scare potential victims into sending money.  

The RCMP does not contact individuals for the purpose of collecting fines or taxes and NEVER asks the public to make a payment over the telephone.

During one recent call to an Edmonton man, the caller stated he was an RCMP Officer from Manitoba.  The caller provided a badge number, phone number, and demanded money for unpaid taxes. 

The RCMP recommends the following preventive measures:
  • Never divulge personal/financial information to unknown callers
  • If you are not convinced a caller is a police officer, please call your local police service or detachment to confirm their identity
  • Consider a google search for any names/phone numbers provided. They may be associated with known telephone scams previously reported online.
Anyone who receives a call from someone alleging to be a police officer colleting fines or taxes should hang up immediately, record the callers number and contact their local police, and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or 

Fire at Calgary home results in assault charge and arson investigation

The Calgary Police Service, with assistance from the Calgary Fire Department, is investigating a suspicious fire at a northwest home. At approximately 12:10 am on Wednesday, May 28 emergency crews responded to a home in the 1800 block of 41 Street NW for reports of a blaze.

When crews arrived there was a physical confrontation on the front lawn, whereby a firefighter was forced to restrain a man who was physically aggressive towards firefighters and refusing to back away from the fire. The man, Robert Kyle CHAPMAN, 26, was charged with assault.  A second man, who was also found outside of the home, was arrested on outstanding warrants.

Arson investigators continue to collect evidence in order to determine the cause of fire, however, the blaze is believed to have been intentionally set.

No one is believed to have been injured in the fire.

Poisoning suspected in deaths of dogs in Calgary

The Calgary Police Service is seeking public assistance in connection with what appears to be an intentional animal poisoning case.

In the early morning hours of Wednesday, May 21, 2014, police were contacted by the owner of three dogs who had been taken to a veterinarian suffering from severe vomiting. The owner told officers the vet suspected the dogs had been poisoned by eating meat soaked in antifreeze. Two of the dogs had to be euthanized due to the effects of the chemical, while another is slowly recovering.

Investigators have canvassed the area around where the animals lived in the 0-100 block of Patterson Rise S.W., and continue to collect evidence in the case.

While no suspects have been identified, officers believe this was likely an isolated and targeted incident. Despite that, police are urging all animal owners in the area to be aware of what their pets are ingesting, both inside their yards and while walking on the street.

Indecent acts at Airdrie Walmart

The Airdrie RCMP is requesting assistance in identifying a male suspect in regards to a complaint of Indecent Acts at Wal-Mart. On May 17th 2014, a report was made of an unknown male touching himself sexually while sitting in a vehicle. The lone occupant was described as a Caucasian male with short brown hair, with some grey hair in it. He was approximately 6 foot to 6 foot 3 and approximately 180 lbs. The male seemed to be in his mid thirties to mid forties, was wearing dark sweatpants, a light t-shirt and silver sunglasses with black reflective lenses.

The vehicle may have been a newer model grey Ford Taurus, with 4 doors and a sunroof. At the time of the offence, the License Plate had a tinted cover over it.

Police are asking for any information regarding this incident. If you have any information please contact the Airdrie RCMP at (403) 945-7200 or Crime Stoppers at 1 (800) 222-8477.

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